Category Archives: Justice

Mutiny

Mutiny

Last year, I walked into a charity shop and bought a book that I knew nothing about purely because it had a beautiful cover. That book was called The Eventful History of the Mutiny and Piratical Seizure of HMS Bounty: It’s Cause and Consequences. Catchiest title ever. I won’t tell you all the details of this intriguing true story but suffice to say it describes a mutiny and the terrible consequences for the crew. It paints the mutineers as villains and the loyal crew as heroes but, as it was written many many years ago, makes no comment at all on the fact that the ships original mission had been to deliver food to help run a slave plantation! It’s a fascinating glimpse into history. This poem was inspired by this story but is fairly dramatised, fictionalised, and otherwise inaccurate.

Mutiny

Mutiny! Mutiny! Sound the alarm!
In the calm of the sea a cry rose from the boat
Then the few loyal crew, they were gathered around
They were bound and then thrown in a dinghy to float

Delivering food to a distant plantation
Their station: feed slaves with a glorious new crop
But they rested, found love with a small tribal group
So the troupe of deserters gave sailing the chop

We the dissatisfied, bitter and poor
Will no more accept wages, orders or commands
We’ll sail for that island and all settle down
For the town on the beach will fulfill our demands

The captain was outraged and said with a sneer
Well, it’s clear we’re the only real men on the ship
If you’ll send us off please, we’ll impede you no more
But be sure, we’ll be back, was the man’s parting quip

They struggled for weeks in the grip of the tide
Many died but a few lucky stragglers lived on
When they made it back home, they were asked straight away
Well, which way have the traitorous mutineers gone?

So to sea they returned, back to weed out the rest
With the best ship available, lethal and fast
They crashed onto the island, turned houses to mud
And the bloodthirsty scoundrels were punished at last

And never again were they put to the test
Yes, they rest now as heroes in glorious graves
Their records were flawless, their legacies pure
Just ignore the small fact that it’s bad to trade slaves

This is fruitiny!

This is fruitiny!

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100th Post: The Rats Shall Rise Up In Glory

The Rats Shall Rise Up In Glory

It was announced in the news recently that scientists no longer believe that black rats were the evil villains behind the spreading of the Black Death in Europe. It has always been assumed that they spread it with their fleas and that the blood of untold numbers of people was on their paws. In the twist of the millennium, it seems that the culprits were actually gerbils! No seriously! Read all about it here! 

This poem is about the absolution of the black rat. No longer hated, no longer downtrodden, no longer shackled with the enormity and horror of a genocide they did not commit. While the theology of ‘The Rats Shall Rise Up in Glory’ is appalling, the point still stands, we owe them a serious apology. This is one of my newest poems and has immediately become one of my favourites, if I may say so myself.

Incidentally, this is the 100th poem on this blog! Woohoo!

The Rats Shall Rise Up In Glory

For many a year, in our fear, villainised
The black city rat, it was spat on, despised
But new evidence rose, so out goes the old story
And the rats shall rise up in glory

Black rats and black death, in one breath often said
We have slandered their name with the blame for the dead
This brand new point of view is so revelatory
And the rats shall rise up in glory

On the heights of St Paul’s, shadow falls on the steeple
A gerbil with fleas, to their knees brought the people
Their knowledge was flat, so the rat took the blame
And the gerbil shall perish in flame

For now we’ve unveiled what we failed then to see
T’was the gerbillic horde! Put to sword they must be!
Now rats sing as a throng, a song celebratory
And the rats shall rise up in glory

But for many years yet, we’ll forget what we’ve learnt
In our shame we’ll ignore what these poor rats have earnt
They’ll be dragged through the mud, labelled bloody and gory
But the rats shall rise up in glory

Rats from East and from West, all the best rats from Devon
And London and Brum, will all come up to Heaven
They’ll swarm through the gate, the great end of history
And the rats shall rise up in glory

Filthy Gerbil propoganda

Filthy Gerbil propoganda

Guilty

Guilty

I could pretend that this poem is some kind of comment on the justice system, or greed or how, in a way, we’re all guilty or whatever. I could pretend that many hours of thought were poured into this poem to ensure that I got my highly political and rousing message just right. I could also pretend that it was a good poem. Unfortunately, none of these things is true. This is simply the tale of a courtroom full of idiots. I wrote it over Summer while I cooked myself dinner. It’s not particularly original but I’m gifting it to you all anyway.

Guilty

Judge:
You stand accused of murder, friend
Your trial is now complete
The jury have retired, friend
They’ve had a chance to meet

The jury have returned, my friend
You look now not so tall
What verdict have you reached, dear friends?
Stand up and tell us all

Jury:
We find the defendant guilty, your honour
Guilty of stealing our hearts
His golden hair, his subtle cheeky grin
Seduced us all! We’ve all been taken in!

Relax your honour, or course I jest
It’s just that we’ve all been so horribly stressed
I thought it best to lighten the mood
Sit down your honour, no need to be rude

We find the defendant guilty of murder
Murderous wit that is
I’ve never seen a swifter, smarter tongue
On one so simple looking and so young

Relax your honour, another gag!
I swear upon the American flag
You need to find your sense of humour
Before you give yourself a tumour

We find the defendant guilty, in truth
Guilty of being innocent
We cannot bare to sit another hour
Under your bitter gaze, your face so sour

We do have a verdict Judge, yours at that!
We charge you with being a miserable prat
You’ve been found guilty upon reflection
And sentenced to death by lethal injection

Huh? What? Say again? (Deafened Ant)

Huh? What? Say again? (Deafened Ant)

Amnesty for T-Rex

t rex

 

While this is a blog of silly poetry, I think poetry can also be used to change the world for the better. I would like to raise awareness of a matter that has been weighing on my heart recently. The T-Rex has been villainized by western media such as Jurassic Park or Walking With Dinosaurs. It’s been accused of being everything from a ruthless predator to a pathetic scavenger. Even in extinction, the T-Rex has no respite from this self-contradictory and cruel slander. I think it’s all too easy to hate giant cretaceous lizards who never experienced the same love we do.

Amnesty For T-Rex

T-Rex’s arms were far too short
To hug a friend or stroke a face
So let’s not demonise a child
Who never felt his Mum’s embrace

Dinosaur

Life, uh… finds a way…