Thursday, 6 October 2011

Drafts Folder Day, 1: Existence

I'm not an optimist
I'm not a pessimist
I'm not a "realist"
I just exist

I exist as in just living
Scraping by on the scraps of promises we're fed
Like "Things can only get better"
Like "We're all in this together"
Like "Yes, we can!"
Believing in change
But still ending up short-changed
Every time
By the grey men
In grey suits
Who dictate our fate at a whim
But they're only skimming the surface
Of muddy waters
While the rest of us are treading through the sludge
No strength left in our legs to resist
So we just exist

I exist
Surrounded by noise
Like the noise of lips smacking
To make promises that aren't kept
The noise of targets unmet
And hopes dashed
The crinkling sound of the mysteriously absent
Bankers cash
The grumbles of the silent majority
The noise of TV applause
Coming from the flat behind
The noise of the mind
The deafening sound of too many opinions
Vying for room
In this vacuum we live in
The noise of lips pursing
While purses clip closed
The noise of minds slamming shut
Hearts sealing up
And arms, designed to embrace
That now only know how to explode

But, please, don't count this
My contribution to the weight of noise pollution
As the views of a bitter pessimist

Because I also exist
In unexpected smiles
And stolen glances on tube rides
I exist by believing that everyone has some good
On the inside
Whatever "good" is
I still exist for this

And at the risk of speaking for the nation
I believe that somewhere
In between the cracks, the shells, the shards
Of what they call "Broken Britain" we all exist
Between paycheques we exist
Between rounds we exist
While friends pretend to not notice
Whose turn it is to pay the tab
Between chips and pins we exist
And even at the end of clenched fists
We exist in the hope of kisses
And in between these kisses we exist
Coming up for air at intervals that we only hope will get narrower
Because deep inside we still believe
That things can only get better
And that we're all in this together
(no, sorry, let's face it, some of us are way more in it than others)
But we believe that yes, we can
We can change
We can improve
And we persist
See-sawing in between dreams and aspirations
And despite disappointments from the grey men
We still surprise ourselves with our innovations
And our ingenuity

So, no, I'm not a pessimist
Nor am I an optimist
Or even a "realist"
Because I value dreams more than truth
And hope more than cold fact
Every day
I exist for just that. 

Remember some of these slogans? A poem I found in my 'drafts' folder, which I must have written early this year... Ok, time for an edit

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