Copyright © 2010 Michael J Emerson

This work is registered with the UK Copyright Service.


I worked the land, slaughtered goats,

my people lived on porridge oats.

By night I whittled at my art,

every gesture a brand new start.

Children by the campfire light

watched me with wide-eyed delight.

We were the sky, we laughed with flowers,

we had no knowledge of minutes or hours;

a rising sun was all our fun, the stars and moon

       our soon.

The man he came one day, took it all away.

He spoke of faith, he showed us paper,

gave us hope, sold us later. He wanted me

to go away, take my flourish, leave the hay.

On city nights I see no moon.

I sing my song like a crooked spoon,

but still the people come and smile

at my unconventional style.

On city days the sun is hidden,

all that is in my heart is forbidden,

my people only see me on television.

Goats grow old and chew the wires

and all the time the man conspires

to buy my life and hide the stars

in pleasantly presented jars.

I think of home all the time,

a place were I could make a rhyme

from life and death, love and hate,

a place were sun and moon are

       never late.

I wield this brush, strum that chord,

faith in paper is my reward.

I turn it in, they dish it out,

as if that's what life is all about.

They want to hear about the land

but would rather have a dollar

       in their hand.

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