Tabloid Catechism

Spite and polish will make her shine brighter
The author can buff with insults and see how quickly
She loses her inferior interior, slickly she grows
In favour of a sickly exterior shell that glows
With borrowed pride in her rented hide she’ll ride
Surrounded by critics and dealers to feel her, peel her
Unseat her, to beat her and shape and defeat her
In poisonous rows of inelegant prose the photos
Nipping her waist and in ever more haste
To keep blowing her nose, and her manicured toes
In uncomfortable shoes, body-conned to abuse
Shamed with glamorous phrases, ungenerous phases
More strokes of the pen to keep her, steep her,
Drowning in ten shades of newsprint, our views print
The choice of the people, the lawyers, the troops
With the focus of every new interest group
The murkier water of sister and daughter
Whose under-age pictures proclaim they fall shorter
Their innocence sold for a penny a piece
To shift Sunday supplements, pay off police
With the politics slanted to left or to right
You can broker new peace or prepare for a fight
And consistency needn’t concern you this year
Your excuse is the public reflection of fear
There’s an honesty to it, this devilish deal
An emotive hard-pressing of Biblical zeal
We wrote it, stand by it, will bribe to keep quiet
Our right to the sale of page three and her diet
What’s Mystic and listed and sicker, more twisted
What’s darker and deeper than truth that’s insisted
We’ll publish it, dressed in the finest of rags
And polish with spite all protesters and slags

Hobson’s Choice

A verdict where no evidence
Remained to paint the path
In the doorway stood conviction
Yet confused by aftermath
All the players rolled their dice
But not a winner to be found
With assumption running rife
And truth spread thinly on the ground
Just a simple little story
All the actors in a row
‘Waiting one moment of glory
Amid plans to steal the show
Messers Winsome, Worn and Weary
Staked their winnings, stacked the odds
Blew their chances to appeal
Before the judgement of the Gods

The X Factor

Creative in confusion
With the power to detain
Those who’d listen hear the fusion
Of a diff’rent kind of pain

Once a middleing existence
Was the best that one might hope
Now another fifteen minutes
Mean the girl may meet the Pope

Who can blame the world for being slow
Or making things too hard
All of life is but a gameshow
So she held the winning card

How appearance is deceiving
Any moment may undo
All the promise of an evening
Lies in ruins by the dew

The girl had surely found her feet
When she began to juggle fire
Too soon the circus clutched their seat
To see her strut across the wire

Now the bird is softly singing
As she spreads her wings to soar
Past the bitter joys of winning
She must settle ev’ry score

The white elephant of hist’ry
Now must hide itself away
For the truth remains a myst’ry
In the sober light of day