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A Hope Denied

It started when Mohamed set himself alight:
a blaze of rage, ignited by a single spark.
That hopeful flame now gutters, and the scene is almost dark
and heroes who, these thirty months, have dared to claim the right

to certain simple freedoms, which they briefly won,
are robbed of them by two kinds of barbarian:
the one loud-hails perversions of the word of God to man;
the other needs no mouthpiece but the yawning of a gun.

Audio file

Listen to this poem — read by Peter Hetherington