We must work on, workers not shirkers,
though we have laboured all our lives;
and now, when our bodies fail us us and pain us,
they make us more trouble than we're worth;
and, because our wits bend, nimble and quick,
to the root and sum of the of the past,
we offend as much by what we know
as the burden of the cost of what we eat.
They say we must stand on our two feet
and not only work but be glad;
we must teach our brittle and aching bones
how work will keep us warm and make us free;
and we must not look for peace and rest
for, in truth, we now outlast our proper use;
and, since, for us, there is no work, though wemay either freeze or sicken, we must die.
© Abigail Wyatt, 2012
And they laughed as they did it
Poorest households hardest hit
Abigail Wyatt was once a teacher but cannot live on her pension. She now works part-time in a cafe, cares for her elderly mother, watches the death throes of western capitalism, and writes whenever she can.