“Price Check”. . . and other poems in response to the last Wednesday Writing Prompt

Courtesy of Tiago Felipe Ferreira, Unsplash

“We cannot expect people to have respect for law and order until we teach respect to those we have entrusted to enforce those laws.”  Hunter S. Thompson

And here we are with another week spent and back at Tuesday for the responses to guest host Mbizo Chirasha’s Wednesday Writing, Presidential Griot, February 19, which suggested poems that address corruption in government.  Hence, this stellar collection gifted to us by Anjum Wasim Dar, Sonia Benskin Mesher, Miroslava Pananyotova, and Corina Ravenscraft.  Miroslava is new to our community and warmly welcome.

Enjoy this collection and do join in tomorrow for the next Wednesday Writing Prompt.  All are welcome: beginning, emerging, and pro.


In innocent days of innocent joys, we played
in the sand, on the new land, feeling safe, with plenty
in peace- nor wailing sirens nor piercing screams,
but flowers blooming, amid ever green trees,

clear water streams accessible, giving shade and fruit,
in freedom solved all oncoming problems, offered gratitude
for blessings affordable, friendly neighbors, open roads-
open houses, environments clean and safe-

but silent troubles surf, time turns pages, changes the scenes,
begin new chapters, peace fades into parades, clippoty clop turns
into metallic squeaks marching boots sound in the streets-
soldiers all over, stand guard blocked are the roads ,

no free pass, stopped by wires, barbed-‘country is saved ‘the radio says,
‘ the enemy disgraced- but why do the people feel enslaved?
aedes have attacked ,Hyades hides in the milky way, martial law in place
‘noble plow land bears no grains’ ‘all is grief, all is pain’

how can any character be tested? in a sensitive situation
or by the power in him, vested?’ But where have all the good
people gone? Killed? murdered jailed, arrested ? Was peace in or out?
Long time passing, when will they ever learn? Will they ever learn?

‘I am a free man’, he said.’ In power to command and control
in ruling over all. If you want peace, stay peaceful’.
Fear tension came to stay, fetters applied, bullets sprayed
tear gas shells burst every week, thus began the traitors greed

Never can anyone be fully aware of preexisting ethical tendencies-
now our afflictions have no end, power shifts from same hand to hand
rich getting richer, poor poorer, greedy greedier, rented killers are beasts
falsehood is truth, favored is the law, so grab the land , enjoy the feasts.

There is more than meets the eye on paper , Anjum, millions are bitten,
suffer the disease, Dengue is here as malaria malingers, cursed is the
marching anopheles,cannot kill Cyclops of prices, caught is the nation
in the corrupted fleece, Beware Beware Cerastes has arrived,

Arise !
Arise Awaken ‘ Prepare to Defend or be forever bitten.’

© 2020, Anjum Wasim Dar

Anjum-ji’s sites are:

:: the politician ::

memory is thought to be gone,
remnants remain, hiding.
working faster with out all

those words,
those images .


bare bones of the fact replaced,
restarted, corrupted items place gently
in the box, tied.
turn with dust.


© 2020, Sonja Benskin Mesher

Sonja’s sites are:


This one, defies prayers and herbs,
Cooked in the dark of day at five star dinners,
Gentility curves life turkey’s before they are hatched,
The farmer, his back bent, stews in his dark sweat,
While down the bowels of Earth, men known as boys smoke coals,
Spitting life out in bloodied plegms,
So cronyism and patronage saints at state joints can light up their dreams,
Exhortation exhausts those who dare get pregnant,
Nepotistic partriacs regale the nation with catchy tunes,
Of dependence disguised as independence,
Politics of economics and economics of politics,
Lording it on the already marginalized by virtue of their location,
Welcome to nowhere in the state of nothing led by something akin to a leech,
A leech fat and sleek from draining the collective coffers
In cohorts with like minded ogres who jam church isles on Sundays,
Paying their tithes to fellow brothers in lootery,
Direction remains fixed,
Loud trumpets announce the loyalty pledge to a Nation on it’s knees,
Beggary is a career and preoccupation of the masses,
When not oddly cheering the fat cats on the stadiums,
They are dying of curable diseases and hunger in peace,
The fate of many a Nation State,
Whose leadership is a radarless fighter be jet,
That is crushing on it’s own side ,
Making merry on the skeletal frames of an impoverished people,
For corruption and cancer have one thing in common if truth be told,
It fells the sick, and infects the sorroudings,
It takes down the sick and drains the caregiver,
It Rob’s the family of joy and peace,
A malady that no one should get comfortable with,
For it never knows not to take,
Till, collectively, the entire falls into a heap of lostness,
Corruption is the devil’s dance that so attracts the sly eyed,
Tragedy is often in the final moments before enough is echoed,
It crushes on itself, eating the eater and the remains of the eaten,
Stuff of the most unnecessary revolutions and counter revolutions,
Blood baths and massacres,
Shocking results of long term abuse by morally decadent chiefs long turned thieves,
Those who steal till the owners notice,
And in harsh attempts to preserve their rotten systems,
Gag all who dare to raise a voice.
The way of corruption is the way of conflict,
The only solution is truth, justice and accountability,
Minus that, civil wars and militia business is here to stay.
Let poetry not be accused of being silent when corruption stages it’s false drama.

© 2020, Nancy Ndeke

Nancy’s Amazon Page is HERE.

the country is plundered
well said
and where were we
when they robbed it
it was like a whirlwind
the pickpockets are even slower
billions stolen and exported
invested in silicone and boats

and now where
we are talking
We’re just talking
We’re just talking

© 2020, Miroslava Pananyotova

You can catch up with Miroslava on Facebook

~ The Last Horseman Is The One Who Counts ~

There is no profit in peace, you know.
White Horse or Red, the blood must flow.
Human constructs, like Conquest or War,
Benefit the rich and bury the poor.
I think the Draft should be reinstated;
So that ALL might witness the horror created.

Send the war-mongers’ sons first,
To hold the Front Line’s Hell.
Watch them die, or even worse,
Return home, as a shell.
If politician’s kids are killed or maimed,
Will war then taste as good as they claimed?

Tell me:

What’s the magic, almighty dollar amount?
To make endless war worth the body count?
If Corporations are people, now, too,
Let’s send them to war, and see if it’s true.
Will those corporations scream in pain as they bleed?
Will they writhe in agony for a rich man’s greed?
Will they lose their limbs, and maybe their minds?
Does the Machine care about the bones, the bodies it grinds?

In the end:

There is no prophet of peace, you know.
The love of money is Greed:  War’s C.E.O.
The wars will continue,  the innocents will still fall.
And the Pale Horse’s rider will someday claim all.

~ C.L.R. ~ ©2013

~ Price Check ~

They convinced us we needed more heroes,
our innocence stolen by enemy acts.
Hypothetical lives multiplied
by infinite zeroes,
politicians crafted their blood-bathed pacts.

They claimed that it was American pride,
that demanded our instant retaliation.
Eleven years in, with one win for our side,
the incessant meat-grinder churns
for our nation.

No lessons from history considered or needed,
the bodies of young soldiers
not their own.
The “War on Terror” will never be ceded,
the truth to the public will never be shown.

War-mongering, insidious
tails wagging dogs,
main-stream media feeding sheep pablum;
Celebrity red herrings, athletic, sexed fogs,
forget the grist issues,
or those who have them.

They sold us out for a long-dead dream,
used our men and womens’ blood for oil
to grease the wheels of the war machine,
killed our youth, spilled the truth,
on enemy soil.

Our lions being led by greedy, hate-spewing lambs:
Puppet-masters, desiccated and dead inside.
Keep mangling brave children of Uncle Sam’s,
all in vain, in the name of American pride…

~ C.L.R. ~ © 2012

Corina Ravenscraft’s site is Dragon’s Dreams

Jamie Dedes:

Your donation HERE helps to fund the ongoing mission of The Poet by Day in support of poets and writers, freedom of artistic expression, and human rights.

Poetry rocks the world!


For Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

The Poet by Day officially endorses Bernie Sanders for President.

The New New Deal

Link HERE for Bernie’s schedule of events around the country.

“Democracy is not a spectator sport.” Bernie Sanders

“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton