THE THREE LORDS OF MATERIALISM
(from a painting by Peter Rogers)
Shielded from the glare of the blue sky
I devise new ways of creating wealth
I sell the land back to its people
Their own oil, water, natural gas.
It adds to this weight my back shares.
It has grown heavy since we took it from Stonehenge;
The weather it shelters us from
Has rounded its edges.
I fear it might one day
Skim the ocean and I
Have no assets on the sea-bed.
I do not think
Like he who also shoulders responsibility.
I straighten my back,
Keep one hand planted firmly on the ground.
I build there,
My factories are not monuments
Though they will stand forever.
Keep one hand free to speculate.
I fear only that should I ever try to stand
My back might break.
I keep these two in check.
I scan the lost horizon,
Keep the wheels turning,
Give a little here,
Take a lot there,
Never let the workers think we do not care.
I fear these two
Might one day let the pebble crash,
But when that happens
I'll be far away.
Lower foreground woman I
And we're down here.
He isn't looking
But I feel his eyes.
I have not smiled for thirty years.
They've taken everything I never had.
They even own myself.
Lower foreground woman II
But know by my flowing hair
A wind is blowing;
It is coming our way.
Nor will ever own
© Gerald England
Composed: Gee Cross, 2nd January 1990
1998 LIMBO TIME (Hyde, New Hope International)