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    Richard Jones

    Richard Jones

    Palestine lost a great friend this week. Richard Jones passed away two days ago. Richard was a close friend of mine. He was one of my favourite poets and a devoted advocate of Palestinian rights and Justice. Richard AKA RedRej was one of the very few intellectuals who struggled to maintain socialist thinking as a dynamic discourse and subject to constant changes. His latest poetry book, Fistful of Poetry was dedicated to the Palestinian plight.


    Richard will be missed by many of us.

    Rest in peace dear friend.



    Monday, November 28, 2011

    Bunker Mentality

    It came to me in the queue,
    Outside the school canteen,
    The day the skies turned black
    And we knew the Russians would attack.
    That afternoon,
    During Double Maths,
    I made my plans,
    Complete with detailed diagrams
    And comprehensive lists.
    Next morning,
    I watched my mother disappear
    Round the corner onto Richmond Road
    Then started my work.
    Supplies from the kitchen/diner -
    Into sturdy cardboard box went:
    1 bottle Tizer,
    ½ a loaf of white, sliced bread,
    1 tub Stork Margarine,
    1 tin Nestles Condensed Milk,
    1 tin Tate & Lyle Golden Syrup,
    1 can Heinz Baked Beans,
    ½ a chocolate Swiss Roll,
    1 can opener,
    1 set cutlery,
    1 plate,
    1 ½ pint glass.
    Two armchairs face to face
    At the end of the bed.
    Supplies box slides under one.
    Library box ( stock of Wizards,
    Captain W.E Johns, New Testament,
    Revised Standard Version ) under other.
    Bed stripped. Mattress arched between
    Layer two -
    Eiderdown spread over the top,
    Layer three -
    Candlewick bedspread,
    Gaps sealed with pillows,
    Wireless and torches placed inside,
    Lastly the big tin box
    After which I crawl,
    Sealing up the entrance behind.
    Wireless on in time
    To catch the latest bulletin,
    No news.
    Time to review forces.
    Out of the tin emerge,
    1 Centurion tank,
    1 APC
    1 armoured car,
    1 ten ton truck,
    1 captured Tiger,
    2 twenty-five pounder field guns,
    Followed by the troops,
    In precise rows,
    Followed by motley POWS,
    After all, no could blame the Germans
    For this one.
    Stand easy men - no new developments.
    Time for paperwork.
    I wonder what the Great Wilson
    Would make of my cosy cave?
    Would he be ready for a doze
    So soon? Better set all the alarms.
    Before I snuggle down.
    Westclox danced around
    To sound the all clear.
    All present and correct.
    All still here.
    Back to work,
    Timed out at 31 minutes,
    After which everything
    Is in it’s place,
    Well before my Mother’s
    ‘Have you had a nice day dear?’
    V. Good. No chance of being spotted from the air.
    What chance have the Russians got of finding this
    When my own Mother doesn’t know it was there?
    And in retrospect, ecologically speaking,
    Well ahead of my time, for even after
    The first strike, you could return in thirty years
    And find no urine drenched cellars, no
    Flaking graffiti covered walls, no
    Twisted, tangled rusting metal.
    No, not a single trace of my defences
    Could have been found anywhere!

    The wandering who- Gilad Atzmon

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