Text of the poem here. At the same time as I wrote the poem, I also wrote a footnote that I didn’t end up publishing. So, it’s below the video.*
Rock-A-Bye Baby (In the Cradle of Confederation, C. E. 2013)
*A ghazal as protest poem, I asked myself? The answer was yes, why not? Protest poems and ghazals are both about loss, one is simply usually placed more towards the anger end of the grief spectrum than is the other. So why not a ghazal protesting the way both my province and my country treat the citizens they keep poor and poorly educated as social burdens, as outcasts?
There is little mercy or compassion or honesty left in our system of government, nationally or provincially; most of those who nominally represent us have long been more concerned with representing the lobbyists who fill their campaign coffers and line their pockets than with finding ways to offer better education, better health care, better living conditions, and better lives to their constituents.
With our current technology, and its advancements almost daily, there is no excuse for how the poor all over our country and all around the world live. There is no excuse, but there are reasons: politically endemic greed and corruption, and disregard for human life.
A government’s reason for existence is to protect and nurture its citizens. But that is not the government we have. Our government is a government of greed, bullying, neglect, and wilful ignorance about, and often outright disdain for, any longterm consequences of its actions. Our government exhibits all the earmarks of the career criminal, the sociopath; the poor are its daily victims.