polemical poetry to prickle the politics of "permanent austerity"
thistles stretch their prickly arms afar
The Island Of Kos
The refugees, gathered, huddled, look out
In their rags underneath the cruel Greek Sun,
At tourists in cafes, lounging about,
Presenting tips to waiters, and- such fun,
To get a tan, or act the drunken lout
In clubs at night!... And, hungry, one by one,
They queue, those used to the torturer's shout,
To fists like a tiger's assault, the gun-
They line up for some rice from the UN...
And a guide, with his sycophantic purr,
Leads, his steps so feline, rich tarts, rich men,
To whom he always says 'Madame' and 'Sir',
To the beach, and they strip off yet again,
Divinely; round them, cowed mortals defer...
They are derided as night's hostile "swarm",
Against whom, 'les flics'- helmets, truncheons, shields-
Approach with all the hatred of a storm-
Are they vermin? Death, Death, Death never yields.
They do not belong to the Nordic norm,
And so they are forced back, down streets, through fields,
Into their Jungle where grim shacks now form-
Their ghetto. It is Death that Power wields-
They perish, under trucks, on the train lines,
Swotted promptly, the same as paltry fleas.
How boldly, ruthlessly, white Europe shines,
Above dark corpses, how it glows with ease,
Over the swarthy rats! Amidst their whines,
Power and Death can thunder as both please...
Zekria Ibrahimi is aged 56, an anarchist who has been diagnosed as a schizophrenic by an often uncaring psychiatric establishment, and he revels in being a rejected outsider. Ibrahimi is Afghan, and disabled, and these grim poems are about what it is to be a refugee - one of the international homeless.