Year End Ballade

Make the best of Hogmanay!
It's never easy, but we try.
Should we drink the night away
or count the seconds as they fly
towards the bells that signify
the moment we've been waiting for
when we can raise the age-old cry -
another year, another war.

Send your sons into the fray.
No need to worry. We apply
elastic combat rules that say
only civilians have to die.
Geneva's dead and buried. Why
pretend to love the rule of law?
The cynic heart can justify
another year, another war.

Refugees are tiresome. They
fade from the papers by and by.
If thousands die along the way
we never asked the fools to fly.
Our bombs are clean, our alibi
is ignorance, our metaphor
for death is damage; so, we buy
another year, another war.

Girls and boys, come out to ply
the evil trade we so abhor.
Our actions give our words the lie -
another year, another war.

speak

of fables turning around
in the mind  taking the place
of promise  pulling today
far away from reason   face

tomorrow  though you know why
it is shy  hidden behind
grey pillars  keen to conceal
the unreal unready   find

another movement of time
in the mime played for your eye
by memory   stretch to accept
your inept redemption   try

denial   everyone knows
how it shows gold for a spell
in sunlight  then disappears
in a drear november   tell

your children all you recall
of the fall of strong and weak
together  how there was no-
where to go  no need to speak