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Hiss  Habitual  Favour  Back  Thief   Hurdle  Bag  Numeric  Shaman

The hiss of disapproval
As they sit on benches
Surrounded by habitual pomp
Goaded by others in favour this week.

Those at the back
(Like anywhere) troublemakers
Playing the thief
Of credulity: well.

A clever hurdle here,
A concession in the bag;
Spin that numeric truth thin
Like some talented Shaman…


I watched the Prime Minister’s question time (PMQs) today, and I wanted to write about how many MPs stood up and pressed Theresa May about the arrangements for the Grenfell Tower rehousing and investigation.

I wanted to explore how surreal it always is to hear any one of them remark on events that affect ‘ordinary’ people, while the MPs are simultaneously being cocooned by grandeur and tradition within Westminster.

There was a lot of reference to class division having been brought to our attention in the harshest way by the towerblock’s blaze, and how this year and this century should mean that none of it should exist any more.

I listened to the accents, and I noted what my first impressions were. I closed my eyes and took them in, tried not to have my storyteller’s mind fill in parts of the speakers’ biographies straight away – but it was impossible to escape.

We categorise from a very early age. We are taught to. The more life experience we have, the more we learn to read the ‘signs’ when we first meet people. It becomes something we do naturally, it gives us a framework, lets us determine if we are ‘safe’, or how much we will be understood by the other person. We get impressions and feedback from others in a myriad of different ways, and often subconsciously; then change our behaviour accordingly.

This becomes a problem when we take our categorisation further and decide that others deserve less. That their lives are expendable, that steps should be missed out when assuring safety. Although it seems incongruous (and, dare I say, patronising?!) to hear a plummy accent declare that ‘the poor’ and ‘disadvantaged’ in our societies should be treated more humanely, it is indeed even more chilling that the fact does still need to be pointed out!

My generated words only led to a poem about the general workings of the Commons Chamber, but there is a lot more in my head I wish to express!

Later, I watched footage of cladding being taken down from other towerblocks, and the whole thing is beyond scandalous. How can anyone, anywhere justify knowingly endangering lives by using materials, that are proven to be a fire risk, on people’s homes?! I really hope that the investigation is widened to include any company or body that is responsible for knowingly choosing money over lives. I just can’t get my head around the enormity of such a deed, and the price the Grenfell residents have had to pay for that decision.

I fervently hope there are appropriate criminal charges brought to bear after the police investigations.


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2 Responses to “Hiss”

  1. Jane Wright Says:

    Well said.

  2. Montaffera Says:

    😊 x

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