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TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY POETRY Anchorites by Martin Rowson

Now listen. So this wanker, right,
Says: “You must all be anchorites!
Stay in! Watch Casablanca, right?
Or you’ll all die point blank!” Oh right!

So we all became anchorites,
In our own Lubyankas, right?
Observing our own danker rites
To help outsmart this canker, right?
Like thresholding clapped thanks. Yeah, right.

Then, when we’d all been anchorites
Once more he jawed, this wanker, right?
And drawled, “My favourite crank, all right,
 Says you’re all thick as planks! Ah, right!
And now you must all hanker, right,
For freedom! So up-anchor! Right!”

He didn’t add that bankers’ right
To growing assets shrank all right
The longer we were anchorites.
But Wealth will Death outrank! Yeah! Right!
They need their bleeding shanks, all right?
So when the cell door clanks, all right,
The outside world’s the tank! Oh. Right.

And so we all stayed anchorites
Inside or out. It stank all right,
But try and get your rancour right
And dream how we’ll outflank the right
Once we’re massed ranks of anchorites,
Our hanks of hair all lank, all right,
Once we amass as anchorites,
A mass of anchorites. Yeah, right.
A mass of anchorites.

Martin Rowson is a cartoonist and poet. His most recent books are Pastrami Faced Racist and The Dance of Death. 21st-Century Poetry is edited by Andy Croft, email



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