Tribal Night


You're supposed to get the impression that.....

in England you should be happy with your lot
'cause in Europe you could get shot by some dick with a kalashnikov
get blown up in Northern Ireland in a chip shop
or in Israel at a bus stop
by some maniac strapped in semtex and a wrist-watch
programmed in a rush to meet his god

In the Middle East
you might be executed by police
or the army
if no-one's hit and killed them
and the next day streets swarm with swaths of vociferous men in synchronicity of contemporary dancers
No longer asking appropriate questions but appropriating answers

It's them against the top men who made their friends the U. N and lay on a mattress 
of currencies fertilised with blood, lined with grief and embroidered with the thread of militia

And every other day somewhere a woman's getting murdered 
because she has the audacity to fancy a guy from another sect. 
Maybe daddykins'll slit her neck
and yet we take such pride in being the species with the greatest intellect
when many a kid gets knifed in his chest cause of the last three digits of his address

You know,
in Morocco if you're raped they'll call you slut
you live in shame
but if the rapist let's you marry him
it'll restore your family's name

In Tanzania. They will surprise an albino child at dinner and
cut his fingers off to crush the bones cause a witch doctor
named Jesus says it'll bring you , not him or the victim; riches
Homeless children in Brazil are still target practice for police
called extrajudicial death squads culling the orphan vermin for
urban communities
and that's their daily reality
A small proportion
become a profitable bonus
of organ donors

But from London, to the near east, to South East Asia, to the Middle East; a mother will take her few
weeks to fifteen year old daughter to what she'll call a party where six women will be waiting for a
batch of few weeks to fifteen year old daughters to hold them down one by one while they cut off her
clitoris with a scissors in the name of tradition.
The scar to be ripped open years later during marriage consummation
For extra change they'll use a fresh razor
Yes, in London
where the copper that kills you wont make it to court
cause it's all nepotism and injustice is bought

So this poem is a candle I light
because I'll never forget the image of that Chinese man making a stand with grocery bags in his hands
facing tanks in Tiananmen Square and didn't even flinch with fear
and nothing steers more caution than knowing you're close to a portion on the grim reaper's plate
so every second, the quick ones and the very very long ones, contain a droplet of prayer even though I don't believe in God
but I am so afraid,
so astonished,
so disappointed and so ashamed
and the words that overload my gritted jaw are not for ears to hear
because what's more remarkable than man's consistent inhumanity
in light of experience is his hell driven perversity
in spite of knowledge

Poem by Simon Burrowes 

View his work on his blog

A self portrait photograph Edited by ChissweetArt
Back to Top