Sunday, October 9, 2016

Kit Kelen #283 - take no prisoners

I have decided to take no prisoners
for a series of studies in ambivalence

it's come to this
it was a long time coming

I have decided
to take no prisoners

feels so good to say it at last
life's short
reality is grim

I have decided
to take no more

I have decided
(it has been decided)
to take steps to limit
the increase in the prison population
(my people put away)
to initiate measures
ameliorating the pressures (various)
the upward pressures leading to incarceration

I have decided
to take more than I have already taken
to take fewer prisoners at least

I make no mention of criminal activity
we may simply take this as read

they have a lean and hungry look
I think most of them have knives, the brutes

so yes well of course there are always caveats
but essentially and for the purposes of self-worth
national pride and so on
let's just suffice it to say
I have decided to take no prisoners
(think of it as a kind of shorthand
for a facilitated trend
[the stats will soon be out
so you can follow on a chart])

they eat too much
I can't afford to feed them
I can't afford the fencing
the upkeep
the cleaning up after them

and then there are the endless inspections

I do take some joy in their squalid conditions
but this is no longer enough

it is, after all, more fun seeing them
come back on their shields
all fours rigid upside down
doing the daisy push
before they're even in the ground

who doesn't want to
just mow em down?

Polyphemos had the right idea
wash em down like pills
with your wine
bones for soup later

Dirty Duterte, son-of-whore caller
(Arturo Ui had nothing on him)
he does the Philippines like this
just rub the fuckers out

and Trump will build a wall
just so he can hear himself think
but that's not going to happen

it's all well and good in theory
just look at these sad-sacks
they won't shut the fuck up
they're just hanging around
waiting to be dealt with

I will not appeal
to base motives

let me say simply
I have my reasons
of which reason must be
none the wiser

let me explain
this is an executive decision
this is my captain's call
I take full responsibility
for taking no further prisoners

you'll think I'm cruel, arbitrary
(I certainly hope so)
you'll think I'm all kinds of things
but I'm not taking any prisoners
not any more

I do not resile
(make a note!)

my decision is historic!

eleven ships full of the hardened
crust-a-bread kind
should have stayed at home
ask any blackfellah
they'll tell you

ah I see from the wry smile
you think it's a con job
that really I have no prisoners at all
you think someone who's running a poem
can't be writing a prison on the side
huh I say huh

probably you think I'm composing this inside
in some elaborate effort at irony

does this mean being a vegetarian?
will I never go hunting again?

yes there will be consequences
if my chickens are free to range

a hunger strike?
then spotlight them like kangaroos
at a cull
feed them to the hounds
that bay on foreign shores

you might say
I'm a prisoner of this thinking –
that's the kind of whining
we've come to expect
from chatterers
from your kind
you... poetry reader
bleeding heart

you think this is all
a bit hairy chested
but even the dead
can take some more flogging
they're ideal for an example
and so low on upkeep

I do acknowledge
convicts would be missed
I know
that prisons create employment
provide a community with a focus
generate business opportunities outside
as well as in
prisons help people to think about the question of justice
they give criminals a breather
from having to engage with the public
(and who doesn't find that hard?)

I do get it
we've had a committee
cast an eye over
it's true there are benefits
in rehabilitation

so there is a little wriggle-room
maybe I'll take just a few prisoners
on a trial basis
(he he)
they could be selected
and I mean carefully
maybe I'll keep them for pets
they'll have to be trained not to bite
not to steal, not commit crimes of any kind
ah but you see what we're up against?

the criminal class!

I don't suppose it's really their fault
there's no one who really wanted that life
the worst of the worst were always abused
and diabolically lacking in luck
never forget, luck's a factor

so really I do have a heart you know
I feel for these poor lost souls

honestly I'd like to take in some prisoners
I'd feed them and clothe them
I'd give them good instruction
cuddles, the rest
make them feel loved
I would make them better people
I'd do my best to make them whole again
I really would
I would rant at them like this
I would

the crapping on
would just keep on

I would take a few prisoners
to help you know...
if I could...
but life
is just too


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