Sunny Days of Labour, Old Friends and the Rise of Poets!

The gold edged green sycamore in my London bedroom window is tremendous in the early morning sun. I muse how it is that that such golden glory heralds decay. Next time I am here, it will be bare. I love the colours of Autumn and the descent into cosiness of winter and lights of Christmas.
I have just listened to a rather graceful speech from John McDonnell, Shadow Chancellor, introducing new Labour finance proposals and reviews. He is class! I used to work with John at the Association of London Authorities and it was always a pleasure. He is creative, determined, and ruthless. But he is also graceful, very intelligent and persuasive. There is no better person for this job.
The election of Jeremy Corbyn this month as Labour Leader has lightened my heart considerably. It has been a pretty amazing month: I launched my debut poetry book, AT The Edge, in both Cavan and Galway (and in London with my friends), I saw The Sound of Music on stage in Dublin with my daughter, we had a brilliant Poetry Slam in Cavan in the Town Hall, I loved the performances and exhibitions in Cavan on Culture Day, particularly the launch of the new Town Hall programme but my highlight, the event that makes my heart dance, is the election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour Leader and John McDonnell as Shadow Chancellor.
For so long now, I have felt betrayed by our political leaders. I have been dismayed at the spin and the political trudge down what seemed to be an inevitable path of big business and deregulation. I felt horrified and powerless. I could feel the icy fingers of cynicism inveigling their way into my blood stream. I was surprised at this because I am naturally a positive person who likes change, difference and passionately believe in people being able to mould and influence their own lives. But nonetheless I could feel myself folding inwards, turning away. I felt old and curmudgeonly. Maybe this is what led me to my poetry. If so, that is rather unfortunate because now I am so happy, relieved to hear and watch Jeremy Corbyn respond to the aggressive, oppositional media with charm, respect, directness and openness. Already, I hear, the murmurs of ‘naivety’ from those who think they know. But I don’t care. I am interested, engaged and hopeful. Can you have a happy poet? Well, let’s see! I hope so!
Now, I must get up and go into the London sunshine. I wish I was at the beach in Brighton! But actually, I would never have given up yesterday afternoon. I was with my daughter and oldest and best friends, reading my poems to them and their children over a champagne brunch. I guess that might make me a champagne socialist…but it was only two hours !testi coleslondon bruchreading

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