Marxist. Trade Unionist. Socialist-feminist. Author. Poet. Speaker. Tutor. RMT ex-Exec. Workers' Liberty. Autie. Bi. PUFC fan.

Covid-19

Poems and ponderings on the health crisis that hit the world in early 2020.

End of the Line

Submitted by Janine on 01 September 2022 at 17:11

Walk down locked and empty streets alone,
arrive for start of shift, it's bear-the-brunt time
to serve some others' families not your own
Going from the home front to the frontline

Frozen pay, now tiny, ice-cold 'offers', 
red-bordered bills alert approaching deadline
The firing line ignites key workers' coffers
Going from the frontline to the breadline

Ambushed by a Cake

Submitted by Janine on 28 January 2022 at 13:59
He was taken aback
by a slice of flapjack
Spliced by an iced bun
that jumped him for fun
 
And the poor bloke was wholly
jammed by a roly poly
He was knocked quite agog
by a shocking chocolate log
 
He was stunned by a lunge
from a moreish Victoria sponge

Bring Your Own

Submitted by Janine on 13 January 2022 at 11:13

Bring your own booze
Bring your own excitement
Bring your own rules
Bring your own entitlement
Bring your own germs
Bring your own immunity
Bring your own free pass
to party with impunity

Anti-Vax Parallax

Submitted by Janine on 03 September 2021 at 15:39

Blocking folk from getting jabs
Harassing working people 
Spouting endless bafflegab
While calling others sheeple

Sharing psychobabble memes 
Spurning free protection
This is off so many beams
This isn't insurrection

I too don't trust authority
I want to smash the system
But this is not a just minority
This is not resisting

Hancock's Last Hour

Submitted by Janine on 02 July 2021 at 13:49

A classic of Great British humour
Slapstick, slap-and-tickle,
caught on candid camera

And everyone likes to see
the bad guy get his comeuppance,
don't they?

But there is something of
the gangster genre
about it too

where Al Capone is brought down
for his dishonest affairs
not for the cruel and unnecessary deaths on his watch

I've Got Your Number

Submitted by Janine on 01 May 2021 at 07:42

My profit margin's wracked with doubt
My tax demands encumber
I think I know a good way out -
Now, where is Johnson's number?

I manufacture hoovers, mate,
but with a bit of luck
I'm sure I'll make them ventilate
and blow instead of suck

I'll slip the goods through Pirate Bay
and ship them up the Humber
While Customs look the other way -
Now, pass me Johnson's number

What they are saying about 'Unprecedented Rhymes'

Submitted by Janine on 07 April 2021 at 15:35

Buy it here.

Janine’s poetry is a raw and powerful expression of the solidarity between working- class people (in all our diversity) throughout history but also particularly the community resistance and togetherness that we have felt during the pandemic.
Nadia Whittome MP

Janine has, through these poems, accurately described life through the pandemic for millions, the frustrations and feelings of being undervalued throughout the mismanagement of it whilst low-paid, undervalued key workers have kept the country going. Absolutely brilliant from start to finish!
Sarah Woolley, General Secretary, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union

Unprecedented Rhymes is a clever, big-mouthed, bitesize commentary on the first year of Covid-19. Its rollercoaster mirrors these broken times perfectly, right up to wondering if your legs are gonna work when you get off.
Gail ‘Something Else’, festival organiser

Prolific, radical and always topical, Janine Booth is one of the great performance poets of our age.
Attila the Stockbroker, poet, musician, troubadour

Janine Booth brings her trademark indomitable spirit to a collection of dangerously direct and honest poems, bottling a cocktail of emotions and human stories gathered across the first year of life under COVID-19 lockdown in the UK. Janine lays out the reality of corruption, neglect, and mismanagement, and rants her way to a definitive, defiant, and hopeful chronicle of life-under-lockdown.
The Repeat Beat Poet

No poet strikes a [power] chord with the feminist punk sorority more than Janine Booth. 
Cassie Fox, Loud Women

Janine Booth is that rare creature, a political poet’s poet. In her work, fire and commitment stand clearly and fearlessly alongside creative clarity and razor-sharp warfare. She takes no hostages. These poems bluntly debunk the bullshit which we’re endless fed. Hers is no hackneyed voice. It comes to us fresh, fierce and fulsome. Embrace it. 
Nick Toczek, poet and writer

 

Locked Up and Down

Submitted by Janine on 20 March 2021 at 14:07

If you're locked down with books
and a partner who cooks
better than you
Then you'll probably get through

If you're locked down with a garden
it might not be so hard and
with a nice glass of wine
You'll probably be fine

If you're locked down with games
and people who play them
and plenty of space
You can probably face it