This is tanka stylee, innit?

Strange times have arrived.
Strange ideas reshaping lives.
We can trust nothing.
Stumbling across shifting sands
hoping to find solid ground,
we’ve become as blind,   
(old certainties are crumbling) 
falling apart, lost, 
cynical, filled with doubts, as
lies are truth and truths are lies.
Strange times have arrived.
A referendum,
vote yes or vote no, 
whichever side you’ve chosen,
bankers’ whores already won. 
Strange times have arrived.
Don’t swallow ‘trickle down’ lies,
no rain will ever
reach the lowest while the rich
have umbrellas upside down.
Skilled workers, tradesmen,
surplus to requirements,
thrown on the scrap heap
by asset stripping vultures –
slaves on zero hours contracts.
A rail line is planned.
Requiring tons of steel but
furnaces are cold
and the laid-off vie for jobs   
as ‘Subway’ sandwich artists.
Strange times have arrived.
Eyes look the other way as
old lives terminate
in overcrowded mixed wards,
afraid, alone, forgotten.
Spent “useless eaters,”
dulled by work and poverty
are atrophying –
riding buses aimlessly
to save on winter fuel.
Strange times have arrived.
War wounded squaddie heroes
camp on cold wet streets
while political masters
use Hiltons, on expenses.
Hipster cafes serve
‘gold-plated’ cappuccinos
to sharp suit hustlers –
‘entitled’ millionaires
rich from Pop’s inheritance.
Beggars haunt pavements,
pocketing small change to buy
their dog a dinner,
or a four-pack of Special,
or tenner bag of Scooby.
Underage mothers
shunting toddlers around shops
in Pullman buggies
hope for room on the bus home
to hard-to-let council flats.
Strange times have arrived.
All ages, races and faiths
queue impatiently
for expired ’best before’ date 
food bank charity basics.
Speech is stifled by
political correctness,
suppressing laughter,
crushing honest argument,
shutting down free expression.
Strange times have arrived.
We would like to uncover
what lies behind this blindfold
stumbling across shifting sands, 
but the thought police say, “No!”


© coolhermit 2023
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critique and comments welcome.
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Strange times indeed. I read recently that the world’s richest one percent own more than half of the worlds wealth while we have kids here with rickets and malnutrition. I think you clearly express here the confusion and frustration of most people at the things going on in the world.


Strange times indeed when students go to Uni to close their minds and allow no other opinion than their own. When rich politicians eat subsided food and drink subsidised alcohol in splendid bars in the HoC and think it’s their “right”
Loved your poem.

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