In Preparation, by Rachel Burns

The man in the library says we are living in a fascist state
he tells me, there are armed police wearing bullet proof vests
and juggernauts blocking the streets.

The man in the library resembles St Nicholas
with his unkept dirty beard and long shabby winter coat.
He looks outside, it’s not right, we are living in a fascist state.
I look down at the newspaper headlines
Deadly Mosque Attack In Egypt Kills Hundreds.

The tree is being put up in the market place
and tomorrow the children will carry lanterns
and parade through Durham town surrounded by crowds of people
armed police wearing bullet proof vests will patrol the streets.

There will be a service in the cathedral
and the choir will weep O Little Town of Bethlehem.

..

Rachel’s poems have appeared in UK literary magazines including The Lake, South, Head Stuff, Lonesome October, South Bank Poetry and The Herald newspaper. She was shortlisted for the Keats-Shelley Poetry Prize 2017.

Rachel Tweets at @RachelLBurnsme

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