1.3 Weapon of Choice
Local Government – photo taken by author

First published in The Terrier (ACES) – Vol 8 Issue 3 – Autumn 2003 and later in ‘Political Fortunes’ anthology by Forward Poetry ISBN.1844187217 in March 2017


The Price of Democracy Kit

 (Instructions: 1. Insert name of Local Council in spaces provided. 2. Sit facing a mirror. 3. Read Carefully. 4. Apply Solution. Works under all climatic conditions, in all locations and in all time periods. No batteries needed)

The Burghers of …….. are willing and able,

To discuss matters political sat round a table.

It’s seldom a pleasure to hear their debate,

Especially when setting the forthcoming rate.

They all hold opinion on what it should be,

But never can settle on what to agree.

So whenever that happens and consensus they seek,

They resort to tradition and defer till next week.


The Burghers stress caution when decisions they take,

And deferral’s preferred to avoid a mistake.

It’s said that this policy is often derided,

But controversy’s avoided when nothing’s decided.

But there is one exception to that circumstance,

One issue so important they can’t afford chance.

And for that decision they long to be praised,

It’s vital that Councillor’s expenses be raised.


The Officers of …….. observe with heads in hands,

As deferrals frustrate all their well thought-out plans.

They’ll have little to do whilst tea-bags they strain,

Because next week there’ll be a deferral again.

So Group Managers dream and Directors conspire,

To bump up their pensions so they can retire.

But until that arrives the game they keep playing,

And take pleasure in knowing the public is paying.


The Government watches from far, far away,

Passing laws to frustrate with each passing day.

Indecision and waste are what they perceive,

Which numerous initiatives are bound to relieve.

And lack of resources is no answer they say,

If the Council wants funding it must pay its own way.

And when Council fails, as they know that it will,

Reorganisation will follow, so swallow that pill.


But who is to blame for this sad state of play?

It’s those who shout loudest and have most to say.

The Burghers and Officers and Government all,

May well be deserving of the firing squad wall,

But the voters of …….. when able to sway,

Defer their decisions in a more deplorable way.

And the price of democracy continue to pay,

By not bothering to vote come Election Day.


©DavidLewisPogson 2003