Monthly Archives: February 2021

My God

This Anarchist poem, Moi Bog in Russian, was published in Ekaterinoslavskii Nabat, 7 January, 1920.

My God

I do not bow before that idol
To whom the wretched of the earth,
The world’s enslaved, downtrodden children,
Convey their gifts and beg rewards.

Such a God gives me no comfort
Who pits the strong against the weak,
Who burdens men with trial and hardship
And makes suffering a cult.

The gaze of the forbidding visage,
The pallor of his mournful brow
Ignite no fires within my bosom,
Nor warm my spirits late at night.

My God is an idea: a new life,
The dawn of bright and happy days,
To struggle, to ferocious struggle,
It summons all courageous men!

It brings revenge on the oppressors
Who deal with men by shedding blood!
My God is great and glorious freedom,
Self-awareness, strength, and love!

E Zaidner-Sadd

Songs Of Revolution

This Yevgeny Yevtushenko poem was in English language Soviet magazine Sputnik, November 1967.

Songs of Revolution

Sing more often
songs of Revolution.
If you’ve forgotten them –
you’re grievously at fault.
Life’s become soft?
You nurse your constitution?
These songs will bring your nursing to a sudden halt
Buy a collection.
Give them thorough inspection.
Not once,
not twice,
but time and again.
To yourself,
or out loud,
with feeling and inflexion,
Don’t toss them aside if they pain your brain.
In their strains you’ll hear
the cold clatter of chains
Coming from snow-swept Siberian plains.
And still they are singing –
not the tunes of the day,
But songs of revolution
in secretive voices
Instead of the bold ones
that stated their choices.
The tyrant’s lash
would have stopped their singing
If they sang as they wished –
top-toned,
ringing.
We are bound to them by the one-blood’s parity.
We are bound to sing with a top-voice clarity.
Life’s become soft?
You nurse your constitution?
You’ve lost faith in people?
Lost faith in the world?
Sing more often
songs of Revolution.
They’ll throw into focus
what a soft life has blurred.

Yevgeny Yevtushenko
1954

Lager Lager Lager

This popular live fave Cool Notes rant was in New Youth zine, number 2, 1983.

Harp (adapted from the TV. Lager advert)

I was drinking harp down the local, when what should I see ….
but a tasty little blonde piece standing not far from me.
So I casually strolled up to her, and with a smile and a wink…
took a swig of Harp, and offered her a drink.
Her reply rather shocked me:… “I don’t drink piss like that”
“so you can stuff your bloody Harp you smarmy looking prat”.
Well I looked a right burk, and felt twice as bad ….
this never happens to those blokes in the TV. ads.
I asked what had upset her. Was it something that I’d said… ??
and she grabbed my glass of harp, and smashed it over my head.!!
So with blood pouring down my fave I’d better warn you…
that the message in these ads is really very true…
“HARP:…. STAYS SHARP TO THE BOTTOM OF THE GLASS…”

Kool Knotes 82

Kool Knotes, Porky, Anna Joy David, and Flipper

Trendy Social Workers

Ginger John in Jamming! (the monthly version), number 24, January, 1985.
The poems that month were picked by Richard ‘Cool Notes’ Edwards.

Hummm OK Yarrrrr!!!!

Totally opposed to the modern modes
Of the hipsters way of life
You can see them in the streets
The candidates of chic
Cos they’re Harpers and Bizarre on my life.

They’re trendy social workers
With their Citroens and calculators
And the Guardian tucked
Underneath their arms.

They wear multi-coloured jumpers
Hush Puppies or bumpers
And safari suits
That make you wanna cry.

An’ they’re always in the boozer
An’ it turns into manoeuvres
When you try to get some beer
An’ they’re in flight.

About all the donations
They’ve made to starving nations
An’ the peace camps
They’ve visited for an hour.

They’re the total social misfit
A social democrat candidate
A cheese and wine party bore
They’re the Hoooo Ray Henry’s
The Tupperware trendies
The Habitat habit forming bores
An’ you know them
When you see them
Cos you always hear them screaming.
Hummm OK Yahhhhh!!!!

Ginger John