I began writing this poem in 1996 in response to the election of a BNP councillor in Tower Hamlets, the first of its kind in England. I was not happy with the poem and shelved it, quietly. I picked it up again in 2001, when it was published by Third Way magazine, under a different title. Still not completely happy with the poem, I shelved it a second time.
I reproduce the poem in its final draft here for the first time, some fiteeen years since its inception.
Oddly I am in love with your rain
and on Fridays my favourite food
is pizza. My father is charming
and my mother beautiful.
In spare time they are human.
I also state without lying
when Southgate missed against Germany
I wept. (Weeping
can sometimes be laughing
as leather cracks Smith on the helmet.)
When shit falls from the letterbox
cricket is not in it when I smell it.
Freedom has brought fair play
into the home so now it is war
in the pleasant land.
If you see me teaching blood
like a language in the street
do not worry. Tomorrow
we go to the ballot box
to cast our votes, our stones.