There is plenty of work to do,
                if only people would do it.
                                Henry Ford; March 1931

                                    Winter bites street corners:
professional bums and out of work
heroes shiver and wait for handouts.

Breadlines are getting longer
the ration of Socialist Party soup
is getting thinner and weaker.

Hope is drifting out of town
in dark clouds of depression.
Ambitions are being broken,

philosophical comments are rife:
Why should I work? I’m living
on going from one charity to another.

At night on park benches tired, hungry,
cold men try to convince themselves
tomorrow will be better... .

This could be days, weeks,
months, even years ahead? Maybe,
tomorrow will never come.

The discarded newspapers
predict business will be normal
again soon. But, the signs state:

No Men Wanted.


Les Merton is the founder, editor of Poetry Cornwall. He’s also written eleven books including four poetry collections, The latest is the beat styled, Inspired by Outlaws. Poems from this collection, with specially composed music by The Moontones, are on the CD, Beat Reality.