Poem: An Obituary for Maggie Thatcher

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Poem: An Obituary for Maggie Thatcher

 

 

Death comes.                       It has a singular certainty for us

all –        who come shuddering and shaking into the world.          The only leveler.

Labour MP Tom Watson says, ‘I hope that                      people on the left                      

  of politics

respect a family        in grief today’.

We wonder why Tom speaks so,

 

 Labour            abandoned the left           long ago.

And former Tory MP Louise Mensch decries: ‘Pygmies                                of the left

 so predictably

              embarrassing                                 yourselves.’

A stiff   upper lip is required,

Death is nothing                         without propriety.

David Cameron praises you as a ‘patriot’             describes

                                                    your ‘lion-hearted love’      for Britain

a wee mouse, squeaking under your iron paw.

Cameron has divided and dismantled the National Health System,

 an elderly woman made     to drink the stale vase water   of fading     chrysanthemums.

 

President Barack Obama says ‘ the world has lost

                                            one of the great champions of         

                                                                                                             freedom and liberty’

Nelson Mandela may not have         agreed.

But freedom after all, has come to mean            the economic              fallacy

of access to the market.  After you lady, only dreams

are                    free.

 

Well, Maggie

an obituary should

be prim and proper                                   as a double strand of pearls.

Or, strive      to speak the truth   about a life        who has born

    generations      of scorn                  and me-first-ism.

 

And I, a grown child of the colonies

Inherit irreverently, British comedy and Shakespeare’s tasteless habit

of speaking ill of the deceased,

especially those     we should honour       for their wielding of             ill-gotten power

 

So:

You were a studious child                 

from Grantham who liked,        reading and poetry.         I wish you’d stayed a poet

and not

become the thin-lipped friend of tyrants.

You did not     believe in          society.                    Your pristine white gloves

waved farewell to public assets and trade unions.

Section 28 would invent a “pretended family relationship”.

 

To be fair;

Billy Elliot         the miner’s son                    is not a miner.  

       

But through you, the miners and their other sons             are not miners either.

 

Thatcherism                                           carried on a chill wind,     

 seeded                noxious neoliberal            blooms.

 

I would leave convolvulus and sticky weed on your grave.                                The only reveler,

Death comes.                      

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