Written for a challenge on the Hall Writers' Forum: a response to Blake's Newton



If you really want to meet him
you won’t find him at the bar
in the theatre or the playground,
at a movie, in a car…
System has no time for leisure –
when not working, he’s at war.

System tuts and wags his finger,
splitting the whole world in two –
subject/object, slave and master
male and female, me and you.
He is tall and very tight-lipped,
white, and knows a thing or two.

When first born, he wasn’t naked –
wore a suit, had socks and shoes.
(His mother fled, she couldn't bear to
see the way that she'd been used.)
Now he carries rule and compass –
instruments he mustn’t lose.

System loves to make decisions
on what’s good and what is bad.
Nothing thwarts his use of logic
nothing makes him lost or sad.
There’s no sea that he can’t measure –
Newton should have been his dad.

Mathematics, Law and Physics –
these are fields he understands.
He knows all rules and regulations
like the back of his right hand.
(Don’t expect imagination,
that’s a flame that can’t be fanned.)

System has a blindfold on him
cannot see outside his head
thinks of all things in compartments
black and white or blue and red.
He loves walls and tall skyscrapers
keeps a gun inside his bed.

If there were a way to build it
System would devise a wall
strong enough to keep out strangers –
no, we don’t want them at all.
In our nations as our houses,
let’s be mean, and let’s be small.

System’s always been much better
than competitors at Trade.
And you'll find he's always Tory –
that’s the way the world is made.
If that scares you, then you’d better
ask what makes you so afraid.

Invariably good at money,
he backs the winner, funds the wars,
underwrites fraud and oppression,
evades the taxes, writes the laws.
Nothing shocks him, nothing moves him,
gives him pleasure, gives him pause.

If you want to beat the System
you won’t find him at the bar
in the theatre or the playground
but inside all things that are.
He is Male, and he is Always –
whether working, or at war.