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Slough

John Betjeman

Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough!
It isn't fit for humans now, 
There isn't grass to graze a cow. 
Swarm over, Death!

Come, bombs and blow to smithereens
Those air -conditioned, bright canteens, 
Tinned fruit, tinned meat, tinned milk, tinned beans, 
Tinned minds, tinned breath. 

Mess up the mess they call a town—
A house for ninety-seven down
And once a week a half a crown 
For twenty years. 

And get that man with double chin
Who'll always cheat and always win, 
Who washes his repulsive skin 
In women's tears: 

And smash his desk of polished oak
And smash his hands so used to stroke
And stop his boring dirty joke
And make him yell. 

But spare the bald young clerks who add
The profits of the stinking cad;
It's not their fault that they are mad, 
They've tasted Hell. 

It's not their fault they do not know 
The birdsong from the radio, 
It's not their fault they often go 
To Maidenhead 

And talk of sport and makes of cars
In various bogus-Tudor bars 
And daren't look up and see the stars
But belch instead. 

In labour-saving homes, with care
Their wives frizz out peroxide hair
And dry it in synthetic air
And paint their nails. 

Come, friendly bombs and fall on Slough
To get it ready for the plough.
The cabbages are coming now;
The earth exhales. 


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Added: 24 Feb 2003 | Last Read: 19 Apr 2018 1:42 PM | Viewed: 12862 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/7968/ | Viewed on 19 April 2018.
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