The Waste Land (A Land Laid Waste by Gideon’s “Reforms”)


The Waste Land

A paraphrased adaptation – with apologies to T S Eliot.

This variation was written to coincide with the first day of the UK Coalition Government’s so-called “Welfare Reforms” which will savagely cut into the income of the very poorest, at a time when millionaires will benefit from massive tax cuts. April 1st, the starting date of Gideon Osborne’s main assault on the most vulnerable members of society, quite aptly also marks All Fools’ Day.

The Waste Land

April is the cruellest month, raising
Bedroom tax out of the disabled, mixing
Malice and discrimination, stirring
Tory hearts with millionaires’ tax cuts.

Winter kept us cold, covering
Doormats with higher fuel bills, feeding
A few of the poor from distant food banks.
And we were frightened.

What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow
Out of this Tory rubbish? Son of man,
You cannot say, or guess, for you know only
A heap of broken promises, while the Sun bleats,
And the Coalition gives no shelter, the government no relief,
And Parliament no sound of explanation. Only
There is despair under this evil regime,
(Come and feel the despair under this evil regime),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of “reforms”.

Shantih, shantih, shantih.

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