Walls, by Geraldine Ward

You will not hide behind these walls forever.
The cave you are concealed in does not want you.
The place that veils your face wants to see you sing, reveal your voice, your wonder to the world.
The skies were made for you to reach, the stars to bathe you in the glory of eternal sunset.
You are not made to travel light of burden,
but must leave cosmic footprints for others to follow after.
The footholes you create when you trample through mistakes are simply dustings of snow upon mountains.
When the avalanche comes and the walls cave in will you still stand tall against the wind?
I can tell you tales of children who have been forsaken and separated from their parents
while the powers that be revel in their Trumphalism or like his wife just don’t care.
These are not tales, but reality made bare, flesh, skin, blood.
While you hide behind your wall,
your towers a fallacy,
fake news reality.
I breathe the fresh air made stale by omnipotent leaders who think they are there by the grace of God.
Yet they live behind their walls and towers.
If only true justic would subvert their power.
One day the dream will be here.
It’s up to us to rise above our own walls
and speak out for what is right.

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Persecution, by Geraldine Ward

Her eyes are windows to a world of change and heartache,
echoes as the wire fence divides,
around the perimeter her children.
She cries unheard tears as she is frogmarched away by immigration.
to a place where she sits silently waiting for her plea to be heard.
But there is no counsel or lawyer to take up her cause.
Just the law which sides with the oppressor.
The enemies come from within.
Are God’s people even listening?
America, Great Britain no longer understanding the need of the refugee.
Her crime, yet more punishment for a life of persecution.

Atonement, by Geraldine Ward

‘Atone for your sins,’
He said as he raped her.
‘Pray to God for your life,’
As her hands were tied
And she was led blindfold,
shuttled into the truck.
When she arrives in America
she is greeted by cold hands,
hearts who gather her
In and separate her from her children.
She still weeps and prays
But who hears her now.
Who dares to care for her?

Political Headache by Geraldine Ward

I am having a political headache.

Don’t know who to choose?

That script they all talk from

Public speaking Neanderthal

Having their final forays in the shadows before extinction

Their rhetoric is tantamount to iron fisted Trumped up patter

With sales pitch grins like trout pouts on chipmunks.

Politicians on both sides like lukewarm tea.

Not up-to breakfast never mind Earl Grey.

They say the same blarney like leprechauns dancing to a tune

No-one’s heard. I am seeing cartwheels,

A Cabinet Conga, nothing is worse than this political headache.

Please pass me the pain-killers; I am really not getting it.

Gauntlet by Geraldine Ward

Wielding his gauntlet like Apollo’s arrow, Zeus greets them.

From among his avenue of Alpha males, they stand like Gods.

Those who don’t salute are left to suffer without mercy.

Murdoch made his billions and Weinstein lied through gritted teeth.

Bad jokes told, while stories sold. Taste and truth and lives were lost.

While these Gods, they reaped the gold.

As victims suffered and were mocked,

I think of George Orwell, who decreed that, one day,

to speak the truth, would be an act of revolution itself.

So while he wields his gauntlet beware,

Satan’s accusing stare and vicious tongue.

As I look down at a world shattered, by the powers that be,

I guarantee one day the truth will set us free.

Bigot Street by Geraldine Ward

There is a place called Bigot Street

Where each pathway leads to prejudice:

“Look at all the dosh she got, for getting up the duff.

That black family over the road, they are living off my hard work and taxes.

Something called the public purse for the government to help the most vulnerable

Marginalised by those that spark the fuse by spouting bile

From their comfortable pews.

Instead lend a hand to the broken, show warmth and compassion

Because one day for all your efforts you might be,

Crushed, alone without a voice on Bigot Street

..

Geraldine Ward is a poet and author from Kent. You will find more of her work on www.geraldineward.wordpress.com

On the Threshold by Geraldine Ward

I saw her on the threshold.

No one spoke to her but I.

Saw a thin veil, clouded eyes.

When I spoke, face smiled,

I knew right.

Camaraderie, the crew did not look her way.

I am twelve again, missing the bus,

causing a fuss, I knew what it was.

Now I am older, wiser or not.

I see that solitary girl’s scared eyes.

We ushered a world filled with surprise.

Perhaps had I not, they would have ignored,

each face in the crowd, Asian or coloured.

The woman alone on the threshold

Autistic by Geraldine Ward

They say he’s autistic.

Just another statistic.

Stupid and thick.

Oh my, what a dick.

But you see how really foolish It is to apply labels

to gifted and talented individuals?

They say he’s autistic, not talented or gifted.

Yet another statistic In an Ofsted exercise.

He should be at this level, he could be at that.

He’s not managing expectations.

Must work harder than the others,

Why?

What are you hoping to achieve?

By your should’s and your shouldn’ts

Such conditions of worth,

to the erstwhile politician, who’d have a prodigy,

treated like an oddity.

When what of the banality,

of a government that hates poetry,

creativity. Cutting the arts for a laugh.

Why is that you wonder? Because Mrs May has a deficit

in human etiquette. Go get some empathy. But that has no price tag.

This crazy, corporate country creates inequality, mindlessly.

Is it so hard, Mrs May, to treat everyone the same?

Not simply those rich twats that laugh at the misfortunate.

Hate honesty and truth.

Because guess what?

Big Brother’s going to get you.

If you don’t speak out now.

So going back to autism.

Take this statistical algorithm.

One in four people have mental health problems.

Often brought on by autism.

This has piled up an epidemic

that costs the government billions.

I will give another statistic.

Only eight percent of people with schizophrenia are working.

How many people here have mental health problems?

But won’t speak up for obvious reasons?

So going back to autism, dyslexia. Or any ism. ADHD, homosexuality.

But if you will listen, while I tell you the truth?

The dreadful vulgarities are not the labels themselves.

But those who apply them like conditions of worth.

Who has ever been called stupid and proved their teacher wrong?

Whoever has asked a question or been shouted down for getting it wrong?

You see the truth is there are good teachers and bad ones.

God save us from the bad ones. Please, Lord, teach them some empathy.

So we all get on in harmony, and if one thing, having my son has told me

is never give up fighting his corner, and the truth.

Let’s work on the weakness but build up his strengths.

Consider intervention also, for those adults and children,

who bully through their own ignorance.

By ignorance, this could mean lack of knowledge.

Like I used to have,

You build it up and learn,

empower those around.

Not trying to hurt others.

Treating them like stepping stones.

We are in this together,

Or it’s them and us.

Believe in equality.

Then what you have is stardust.

Bullshit Brigade by Geraldine Ward

All hail the bullshit brigade.
The ministry of injustice has spoken.
They are bringing out a new handbook today,
to replace the King James Bible.
Saying all hail the bullshit brigade.
The multitude has spoken.
But no, the problems that arise.
Out of a system outdated, nepotistic, deified.
An unnamed God called pride and power.
Saying all hail the bullshit brigade and ride that seat to tower, to take and fabricate.
Highly leftist columnists plagiarize the far right.
Enter this good night, fornicate, and eliminate the truth within our sight.
You see some people are born equal but some are more equal than others.
The saying goes in Animal Farm;
this is all Orwellian, Big Brother.
What comes to pass is state control by the far right mass
and those leftists that are turncoats in disguise ought really to get a piece of my mind.
This is a nanny state, and ministry of minions run by young and old goats.
Who wouldn’t understand the meaning of equality if I spoke of civil rights
and Martin Luther King?
The Gettysburg address and Abraham Lincoln.
All hail and ride the bullshit brigade.
They are heading for the fall of their lives
while the rest of us just walk away and think head held high, do I really want to be part of this self-serving nonsense.
Dictatorial nonchalance by the privileged few, it’s all playground politics.
Now let’s get back to school and learn the lesson.
Grownups play nicely now, even your children know how to treat each other.
It isn’t really rocket science.
Because all those on the bullshit ride, their time has come, their cards are marked.
Be kind to each other, it’s really that simple.
Love one another, if you agree with someone’s view or not.
The proof is in the pudding and I am dying for a crème Brylee
Leave the toffs to touch the caviar.
The kids to go and play
and let’s now end the foolish game of Groundhog Day.
Where the only winners are the bullshit brigade.

Geraldine Ward is a poet and author of adult and children’s fiction. She has edited magazines and was the founder of Teesside Writers’ Network and Teesside Artists’ Journal, before relocating to the south-east with her young son and family. She has had work published most recently in Writers’ Café Magazine, Issue One, Edited by Marie Lightman as well as Blacklightengineroom, Edited by PA Morbid and Beautiful Scruffiness and Fires in the North, Edited by Katie Metcalfe. Her poem, “Bull**** Brigade” is also published in her recent poetry collection, “Geraldine Ward’s Degrees of Separation” and “On the Threshold” is in “Under the Willow,” by Geraldine Ward.