We are Great Britain

Well, we are in the midst of a global pandemic. Covid-19 has infiltrated every aspect of our lives! Here in Great Britain, we are in lockdown. At the moment we can only leave our houses for essential food shopping, collecting medication and one session of exercise a day. It may get even more confined as the virus reaches its peak. I never thought I would ever see anything on this scale in my lifetime. It is like a war but we cannot see the invisible enemy and we have no defence except quarantine. Here is my ode to Great Britain…

We are Great Britain
We are the brave and afraid
United in our fight against
A silent killer, invisible to our curtailed eyes
We thrive in times of compromise
A resilient nation
Born of grandfathers who knew no word but pride
The haunting times of war
Back then are echoed in this fight against the silent enemy
A nightmare we are living
But a dream that silhouettes itself in cloaks we cannot see
A dream that does not differentiate between the screams of you and me.

For we are Great Britain
We grit our teeth and keep our fears beneath
Our trembling egos
Hiding our terror
Hoping these draconian measures aren’t forever
Hoping the doors in the outside world
Aren’t closed for business for too long
Braving the wrath of the food shops
Gritting our teeth and staying strong
As the mindless stockpile food
And the homeless are left to die in the gutter
And toilet rolls become a priceless commodity
And the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies just become fatter
As the ugliness of humanity rears its head in wanton greed
And we don’t give a shit about the rest of the people
As long as our family’s arses will be clean
We will worship in secular churches without a heavenly steeple
And you can say that they’re selfish
You can say that they’re mean
But it’s self preservation in a global scheme
Of fear.

For we are Great Britain
We cower behind our green front doors
Like animals trapped in cages
Zoo specimens walking on two feet instead of four
We keep our doors tightly shut against the bacteria and sickness
We wash our hands ten hundred times a day
We sanitise, we obliterate, we obsessively
Scrub our justified fears and insecurities away
Don’t touch that infected door
Don’t stand near me less than two metres
Don’t let the kids go out to play
Don’t breathe your dirty air
Don’t let the family come and stay

For we are Great Britain
As we watch our Boris on TV and he tries to lead a nation
Against an enemy we cannot see
Each night he makes a brave and science informed declaration
But deep beneath his bravado
He must be feeling the sting of condemnation
He never signed up for this shit
He never had a notion
He would become an icon
In a state of emergency

For we are Great Britain
We are parents battling with home education
We are fans battling with no footy on tv
We are nurses tending the desperate and sick
We are doctors fighting this pandemic, this nightmare that’s running free
We are the shopkeepers keeping the nation fed
We are the care workers tending the sick and weak
We are the teachers teaching the kids whose parents
Are sacrificing their health
These selfless beings, what a risk to take
And the volunteers who their comfort and safety have swapped
We are the drivers getting food to your shops
For the benefit of this country
And we salute you all
In a time where even the strong can fall
We salute you Great Britain
We will get through this
And we will get to the finishing line
Still standing proud and tall.

©2020 Sarah Drury

Privilege

I know there will be mixed feelings about this poem, but i was furious to learn that Prince Charles had received a test for Covid-19 when he had mild symptoms, when we have frontline NHS and healthcare workers risking their lives and not being able to get a test! Boils my pee!!

Don’t want a big political argument about this, we are all entitled to our own views.

Here’s a rant called ‘privilege’.

Privilege

Your privilege
Turns my blood
As cold as a cadaver in death
Lips blue
Tainted in death wish hues
With the colour of your politics
Doctors, nurses
Angels on the frontline
Your sacrifice isn’t adequate
For a vital test.

Heir to the throne
Cherished by the patriarchy
Whilst our health workers,
Heartlessly thrown
Between a rock
And a hard place
Courage doesn’t matter
When, placed between your lips
When you gasped at birth
Was a silver spoon
As you inhaled
The immunity
Of gentry.

Your privilege
Turns my blood
As cold as a cadaver in death
And I die
Of shame
At the injustice
Of society.

©2020 Sarah Drury

Medal of Honour

My grandfather, who was 92 when he died, 9 years ago, was a very brave man. One day, he was walking through the centre of Hull when he saw a gang of lads attacking a guy with learning disabilities. With no hesitation, he waded in, pinned the ringleader to the ground, the other lads ran off, and he got another member of the public to ring the police. He managed to hold the bully down until the police arrived.
For this he received a bravery award from Humberside police. I was SOOOO proud of him! Here’s a poem dedicated to him…

Medal of honour

All we have is a fading photograph
Proud old man
In tan leather shoes
Polished into mirrors
Of army reflections
Standing on principles
Of selfless bravery
Heels as sturdy roots
Sucking up the echoes
Of classless courage
From an Earth
Sodden with the blood
Of cowardice
of cruelty
of discrimination.

All we have is a photograph
Proud old man
In weathered wool coat
Threads laid bare by age
Your seventy-five years
Hold you not to turn a blind eye
To turn the other cheek
Once an army boxer
Punches never left you
But attack in defence
Working class fists
Infused with the legacy
Of world war hardship

Fist to floor
Floor the enemy
Enemy a prisoner
Prisoner of war
War crime
Crime for a cheap dime
Don’t mess with him
Non nonsense banker
Pennies for punches
Pounds for penitence.

All we have is a photograph
Proud old man
In memories now you’re gone
Proud to call you grandad
Proud

©2020 Sarah Drury

Exhausted

Just a bit of a poem i wrote about the current situation…

Exhausted

I am exhausted
Dragging these weary bones through invisible wars
TV blaring its cacophony in the corner
Corvid-19 holding me prisoner within these self isolated doors
My child climbing the walls and pleading for some freedom
I feel like getting down on the floor and praying on all fours

Boris
Spouting his rhetoric from the media, the BBC
Trying to be a strong leader, trying not to let the public see
He’s a scared little boy
Why the fuck do I pay my tv license fee
To watch this repetitive shit
Running from the screen like a stream of neurotic pee
You will die if you go outside
Stay the hell two metres away from me.

The pandemic, the pandemic
I cry as I watch the brave face of the medic
Who died
And my son is oblivious when I shit myself
And he asked me why I was crying
And I lied
Because I am a mum
And mums can’t be scared
I have no support, I’m alone
Like every fucker’s alone
In our antibacterial bubbles
Picking over the psychological rubble
Of the mental health fallout
Of the emotional war that this battle’s really about

Give us three months and the country will be fucked
Government will be bankrupt
And I will be tearing down the walls of this home
With my tooth bitten nails
Teaching my son, but the schools are shut
And the system always fails
To see that we are mums and dads and grans and grandads
And some of has haven’t got a fucking clue
What this education role entails
And we’re tearing our hair
And beating our supressed, fearful hearts
And swimming in seas of uncertainty
That are tearing us all apart

But we will win this war
That goes much deeper than a rampant virus
And our heads will be neurotic sheds
As the futility of this pandemic destroys us and toys with us
But I am a mum
And I cannot be scared
I have an autistic son
I cannot be scared
I cannot be scared.

©2020 Sarah Drury

Hope

Can’t sleep, so got to work on a mental health poem for a video we are making in conjunction with the guys from cafe indie. I was asked to perform one with a message of hope but didn’t have one, lol, so have written this…

*WARNING – A FEW SWEAR WORDS

Hope

When days go on for months
And minutes go on for hours
And I can barely lift my head from the pillow
And life seems like a superhero
Died without her superpowers
And life is bloody tough
And living is bloody rough
And I drag my arse into Primark leggings
And forget to brush my hair
And I don’t fucking care
That I look like shit
Twenty days
Of being in a black, depressed haze
This is not some emo phase
That I will outgrow
I haven’t won some temporary holiday
In a luxury psychiatric facility
I have just lost my ability
To see rainbows and sunshine
Just lost my ability
To see in technicolour
I know

When days go on for months
And minutes go on for hours
And I can hardly stagger through the graveyard that is life
And I can’t bear the sight or the scent of the flowers
On the graves
Little gestures of love
And I raise my arms to the skies above
And scream
I scream
For this blanket of darkness to fuck right away
For this cloud of doom and gloom
On other messed up minds to play
And I can’t find words to say
I’ve had enough
But there is a way out of this
And I know that life does not seem like bliss
I know living each moment is hardly a piece of piss
But you need to reach out
To tell the world you need a helping hand
For there are those who have heads buried in the sand
But depression is not a plague
And talking about your mental hurdles
Means not that you are weak, but you are fucking brave!
Mental health is fragile
Sanity is a fine lined thing
I don’t care if you scream your pain
As long as your head starts to clear
Then your mind can start to sing
Songs of hope
So, sit beside me
Share my pain
Show me your compassion
Show me that you’re here for me
That you’ll sit with me in the purple rain
And maybe I will smile a little
Maybe I will lose my hues of blue
Maybe tears will lift
And during my nights, my terrors
Will be chased away by peaceful dreams anew
Then I can live again
In happiness
Those minutes that go on for hours
Those hours that go on for days
And the months and the years
Will shine as brightly as the sun’s dazzling rays
And I will shine again
I will shine again

©2020 Sarah Drury

My Scratchcard Dreams

So easy to get sucked into the scratchcard addiction. I see people spending pounds! Which many of them can’t afford. But the is a thrill there, an adrenaline rush!

My Scratchcard Dreams

The queue’s quite long today
I’m bedecked in hopes
Wearing dreams of fortune shining down
On preconditioned dissatisfaction
Forced to wear a halo of ordinary
When deep, deep down
I fantasise of tiaras and jewel bedecked crowns.

I struggle every day in torrential tedium
Humdrum raining down in drops of ordinary
Dreaming of a time when I will wake one day
When these games of juggling life I will no longer have to play
And my world will explode in a riot of ecstasy
A blaze of colour in all its vibrant hues
But I know the probability is just untangible fantasy

But I clutch my two measly quid
I stand in line like a fortune junkie
Scared to scratch those little silver panels
Like a See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil monkey
Each panel a Russian Roulette
I may as well point a gun at my bank account
The amount of money I spend
I should just throw it down the drain
But there’s a thrill in the pain
Of sitting on the edge
Of a knife
In the acid rain

No win
Skint again
The sting of defeat
Like downing a bottle of cayenne
Two quid down
That’s two value burgers at McDonald’s
And a small latte at the café in town
But the thrill
The throbbing excitement
Is like popping an ecstasy pill
And I will not stop

Addiction is a jailor
Dreams are freedom
And I will not stop
I will not stop

©2020 Sarah Drury

The Angels Took Your Last Breath

My husband was in the Freeman Hospital waiting for a heart transplant. The days and hours I sat by his bedside, hope in my heart, waiting for a miracle…

The Angels Took Your Last Breath

I sit here
Your still hand in my hand of warmth and hope
And wish that I could feel a movement
A random twitch
A palm around my warm blooded hand
I sit here like an ostrich, hopes in unrealistic dreams
Burying my head in the sand
Wishing for days away, in the car, music blaring on the radio
Blasting out our favourite band
Sharing our joy and passion,
Carefree, equinamity,
And

I sit here
Bleep bleep
Alarming sounds
Nurses do their rounds
My heart thumps, my head pounds
It was my last reserve but I found
Strength in adversity
This bed so high tech
Machines calling all the shots
Taking your precious breath
And for all the dreams about death
I cling to my last thread of knowing you are somewhere
Out of your broken body
Maybe watching over me
Maybe you can see
My devotion
Maybe this was meant to be

And the stars aligned
A universe, a spiritual decree
Maybe you are far away
Maybe I will never get you back
For you are too far gone to stay
The days of joy, the days that we would lay
On rumpled sheets
Smiles on our blissful faces
All I want to do is play
Is play
With you
But now the thing I have to do

Is sit here
God try and get me through
This unknowing
This clinging onto maybe you’ll get well
Amidst the machines and tubes and wires
Amidst this technological death knell
And I love you so much
I long for your touch
On my face
A stroke of the palm
A never ending embrace
And I love you
But this feels like a race
And we are coming last

I sit here
Nurses telling me its time
You’re not here
Your heart was your final crime
And I sit amid the sorrow
The alarms which bleep, the monitors which chime
And then silence
A breath stolen from a beautiful man
A heartbeat that I never again can
Feel
Warmth drifts slowly away
Welcomed by the bitter cold of death
I’ll never forget when the machine took your last breath.
And I hold your hand
I take in your face
I cannot bear to take a huge embrace
We lost my darling,
We lost the race of life
And now a widow
But forever your loving wife
Forever your loving wife.

©2020 Sarah Drury