Sunday, 9 June 2013

Relevant Debates

I had the pleasure of doing some exam invigilating this week. I say pleasure because for three hours of an afternoon I found myself re-affirmed in my belief that we are being sold a load of rubbish by the mainstream media.  "Muslims wear silly hats (turbins) [sic] and are therefore terrorists," was the choice quote I over-read. The small world view that anything different is dangerous, that we should protect our values and our rights, however outdated, is one I rarely agree with, not least in this sense.

It is a sad world we live in however, when major political broadcasts like the BBC's Question Time spend more time discussing Muslim people and the rights of married people (which as far as I can see aren't going to change) and very little time discussing what most of the audience members wanted to discuss- fracking.

Fracking is the extraction of shale gas by means of firing chemical mixtures at high pressure into the base rock. This cracks the rock and allows gas trapped for thousands of years to escape. Latest estimates claim there are enough pockets of gas across England to last us about 50 years-those are the very top estimates.

The idea sounds nice, doesn't it. Qatar, Dubai, Blackpoolistan. Except there are horror stories. There have been leaks, failures, pollutants. We can argue about the amount of gull shit in the sea all we like, at least the taps are safe as things stand.

If you are just hearing about this, where have you been? We're well down the way to having it happen- they've already had a go once but, with enough pressure and enough voices it can be made very difficult for these people to make their much sought after profits and hopefully in the end just not worth any more of their time.

For me there is no amount of gas worth carving up the bedrock beneath our countryside. Say there were fifty years worth, which even from their figures I can guarantee you there aren't, what then? I still plan to be knocking about in fifty years and I'd rather they spent the money now finding alternatives to fossil fuels, not drilling ever deeper and wider in an attempt to seek out what by then will be the last drop of gold on the Earth.

On that note, and with the voices of the highly disgruntled North West residents still ringing in my ears from Thursday night, I've written another poem on the very subject. The pen is mightier than the sword... we'll have to see.

Relevant Debates

Trillions and trillions of cubic feet of gas
Guessed in Imperial, as is the way
But speak not about it, the gays want to marry
It is fucking not fracking debated today.

Somewhere we forgot that what Charlie and Ken do
Has little effect on dear Barbie next door
She is still just as married to Jonnie the banker
But now frightened they'll invade her through a back door.

There's a row going on that's not about back hand jobs
It has nothing to do with Fiji-loving Lords
It is not on your news, it isn't so cool to be Northern
They're just sneaking it in through the relevant boards.

Forget what you thought that you knew about fracking
The tales of tap lighting should be spoken no more
The water pollution and the couple of earthquakes
They won't happen again, no, the drillers are sure.

They've checked their own surveys and told us the best bits
They're not mentioning how wells have already failed
They just keep finding test sites, surely the replacements
Awaiting their moment to reveal the details.

Cuadrilla, know now your ideal doesn't wash with me
Every thought of you buggering fields near my home
Is detestable, and as quiet as you may be about it
Frack off now, we'll not be bought by your measly bone.

Thanks for reading, S.

Find out more about fracking on Stop Fylde Fracking and Frack-Off


Ashley R Lister said...

People tell us that poetry is of no use in a situation like this.

Personally, I wouldn't have heard of fracking if not for poets like yourself and Vicky and I think we each need to be doing everything and anything within our personal power to raise awareness of sickening issues such as these where corporations are allowed to ride roughshod over the wants, beliefs and needs of individuals.

Great post,