“All is night and blackness,
As the razor cuts my skin
And liquid hatred flows out
Staining the world. All is darkness.”
With that the girl in the heavy make-up
Closes her silver-bound notebook and sits down
To appreciative noises from her black-clad peers
Sitting in a circle in her gloomy room
Lit only by expensive dripping candles
And the standby light of her Xbox
Not quite concealed under a purple sheet.
(Meanwhile, in Sudan, a five year old orphan
Is struck hard across the face
By the butt of a rifle which breaks his skull.
He falls across the bodies of his newly-slain parents.
The crimson pool darkens in the heat.)
“Liquid hatred,” says one boy, sweeping back
His long black-dyed hair.
“Yeah. I feel that.” He casts a furtive glance
At the girl sitting next to him
Who pushes out her barely-concealed breasts a little.
“Yeah, hatred,” she says breathily, “for all those
Fakes and Barbie wannabes.”
(In China, a little girl looks over at the boy next to her, and smiles
And catches her finger in the machine
And screams as the blood flows out.
The other children do not pause as the man takes her away,
Just carry on making toys in the lice-infested workshop
Hoping she is the only one to go today.)
“Yeah,” says the first girl, the poet.
“All those fucking whores wrapping their legs
Around the football team every day.”
She glances at the boy with the long hair.
“Yeah,” says another boy, pale-skinned and pockmarked.
“Dirty sluts they are,” he continues as his cheeks turn red.
“Give it up for anybody.”
(On a street in London
An Albanian girl, on her fourteenth birthday
Lies on a hard bed, head turned away
From the old man grunting on top of her
Watched by three of his colleagues.
She still bears the bruises from last night
When she tried to refuse. She has learned her lesson,
And will not fight again. But she cannot help her tears.)
As the conversation goes on
The poet-girl’s mind starts to wonder
Onto other topics; her homework,
What colour nail-polish should she wear tomorrow,
Blue nightshade or stick with black,
And whether her bitch-mother had finished cooking dinner yet.
(An African girl blinks flies off her eyes,
The only movement she can muster
As she lies beside a pool of vomit
And half-digested grass. It sticks to her matted hair
As her distended stomach rises and falls
Slower with each desperate breath.)
“Lying bitch-mother,” she thought to herself.
“Yeah, she’s the one who makes my life so hard.
That’s an idea for my next poem.”