Posted in Lies


The Prime Minister had special affection for the United Nations
suspicion couldn’t decide if her humanitarianism was sincere
or hedge against voter rejection
an IOU or two in New York useful in bad times
jobs for the boys. Or girls.

Timing in politics, as elsewhere, is everything
unwanted refugees allow centre stage magnanimity.
Take more? Yes we can.
Cameras and Secretary General take note.

He fled Cambodia
when it was Kampuchea
spent years in a camp in Thailand
a tailor trying to find work – anything
I was a volunteer on a resettlement programme
trying to find fulfilment – anything.

I am shown a thick file
rejection letters
jobs he could do easily and well
he thinks it is his language.



Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.

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