This poem seems particularly pertinent today. Brilliant and I love the rhyme structure.
VALEDICTORY Those living and those yet to be Are all her immortality: The subjects of the world she made Still speak her language, still afraid To change it. She saw her people as they were: Don’t-Cares who can’t be made to care: These sentimental hypocrites Let her, their true-blue Clausewitz Arrange it. Let poverty without parole Replace the right to draw the dole. Let coppers pulling triple time Turn opposition into crime At Orgreave. Let the General Belgrano, Sunk to save our sheep, our guano, Mark the freezing south Atlantic As the empire’s last romantic War grave. Let children learn no history These days, but only how to be As economically astute As all the dealers snorting toot For dinner, Desperate to anticipate Like destiny the nation state’s Ineluctable decline To client status: I me mine, The winner. Branch libraries and playing fields Deliver rather slower yields Than asset-stripping mountebanks Can rake in flogging dope and tanks; Great Britain! Strange: no one nowadays admits To voting in the gang of shits Who staffed her army of the night: Our history, it seems, is quite Rewritten. When it comes to telling lies The change is hard to recognize. What can’t be hidden can be burned. She must be gratified: we’ve learned Her lesson. Now when some sanctimonious ape Says, No, there never was a tape, A bribe, a private meeting with Et cetera, where are you, Smith And Wesson? FROM: THE DROWNED BOOK Sean O'Brien Picador Classic