Children of War (An Angry Rant) by Kirstin Maguire

“The offices of Downing Street are particularly busy today,

I’m ever so sorry children, you’ll have to go away.”

No this isn’t a direct quote but let’s face it, it may as well be,

As we patronise, then turn our backs on the plight of adversity.


“The locked doors of Downing Street cannot be opened today,

We’ve been hearing the same story for months, will it not just go away?”

We’re a nation of problem-solvers, we want to put things right,

But if answers don’t come fast and easy, we’ll put it out of sight.

Because we’ve signed petitions and sent a few possessions,

We wonder at lack of resolution and escalating aggression.


“The workers at Downing Street are today writing Policy,

Between acronyms and procedures, there’s excessive bureaucracy”

How will all our strategic words read to the next generations?

Or will it really matter when we’ve cut global relations!


And in a few months time, Panorama will investigate,

We’ll shed a tear and say ‘it’s awful’ on hashtagged, emotive updates,

At stories of human traffickers, of violence, of child rape,

We’ll claim ‘it’s just so shocking’ and sit with mouths agape.

And if, in years to come, a mass grave should be exposed,

We’ll again be shocked, because we paid off one of those

Oppressive Regimes to clear up all the mess,

We’ll say ‘We didn’t see it coming’ and then we’ll blame the press.

Free Woman by Kirstin Maguire

I never had to march to get my vote,
Nor read reams of rules on how to behave,
Nor adapt my dress or tone of speech,
The ceiling was glass so I couldn’t see,
It was easy to think of myself as free.


Aristotelian view; woman as beauty,
Of men as leaders and women their aide.
Medieval Distortions of Woman as Temptress,
Or even The Hammer of Witches Brigade,
Needed no question, it’s history,
It was easy to think of myself as free.


And under the knife seeking beauty,
Or pretty girl he holds on his arm,
The woman painted with make-up and guilt,
Or even, no option of Head of a Church,
Needed no question, they’re just things you see,
It was easy to think of myself as free.


Infant girl rates decline year on year,
Or hearing the anguish of FGM,
The marriages forced, or married as child,
Vivid tales of abuse and violence,
Needed no question, they’re not near me,
It was easy to think of myself as free.


Then, gap in pay and management roles,
Lack of contract flexibility,
Well finally something impacted me,
Took this to see my humanity,
Needed to question while this impacts any,
Would I ever think of myself as free?

Evacuate The Jungle by Kirstin Maguire

In the jungle they don’t know your name.
It’s lost in teargas that strikes it’s claim
On you and the roof over your head.
Riot police and twists of dread
That clench your stomach tight.
As they knock at the door,
Say ‘you’ve got an hour’
It’s not your place anymore,
They’re demolishing towers
Of temporary existence,
The ambition now is subsistence.
Where is a place
When you’ve been displaced?
Wide eyes seeking out cover,
Well it’s not here, is there another
Place to move on to,
Something to hold on to.
On the long odyssey to freedom?
Nothing to appeal to or reason
With, as you’re eaten up whole,
Just finding a role,
And moving on again.
They’re still playing cricket on the other side,
Human spirit spilling over the sides
Of tired desperation.
We’ll call it issues of a nation,
And measure them up for size.
‘Cause somehow it will give a guise
That we can behind.
Tonight it starts all over again,
How will we justify it when
The history books retell it?