Poetry at Sangam



Nomenklatura Suras by Les Wicks

The oldest river, cradle of civilisation
is now a drain.
Eyes are everywhere.

Beside this rumour of water
raw ideas are tortured away from problematic citizens.
Some fools remain inquisitive despite all their schooling.

Naked in the desert, naked in their jobs – the educated people
are running numbers, to survive. They fling their flattery
to peripherally bask beneath a uniformed sun.

No simple chore this…
men carry doors on their backs
to ensure they are never opened.

With a smile over twitch, masters below masters procure -
occasionally avoid atrocity as they meekly suggest moderation.
Having family changes everything… to endure is a pilgrimage.

Aromatic lamb on a bed of couscous,
stewed tea… God’s blessing of wise visitors
who paint & watch CNN. This is savage

but they are not savages. Like a mirror the fickle awes of sky
drop bombs. Regime change is fashionable this year.
There are efficiencies planned in the fictions of right.

Years are nothing, what’s rebuilt doesn’t work –
just as effortlessly as the dirty system before
that so many died to defend.

Worry is pointless, time is a grader.
Alongside the quacking of historians
all mistakes will be buried under fresh initiatives.
previously published Getting By Not Fitting In (Island, 2016)