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The noblemen control the pen, indeed they own the farm,
but nonetheless exude finesse (and need I mention charm?)
with revenue to sate the few, exulting arm in arm;
for all the rest, they wish the best and certainly mean no harm.

The fourth estate stands proud and straight, emplaced upon a peak,
beside a birch where parrots perch and claim the truth to speak;
while hatching schemes they’re hawking dreams to keep us mild and meek,
promoted by the gods on high, that clever reigning clique.

They spread their lies throughout the sties to keep the truth at bay
and horoscopes are filled with hopes for those with faith to pray;
the other few wait in the queue, with faces made of clay,
collecting crumbs which then become the dreams of yesterday.

The tube embeds the talking heads (you know the ones, the tools)
who on the screens won’t spill the beans, lest mighty might unspools,
so bend the news reflecting views of those who set the rules
to obfuscate and fabricate their pabulum for fools.

With pyrite smiles and other wiles, they thrive concocting tales
that lead to wars on foreign shores, which help improve the sales
of missile tips and battleships, discounting death that pales
and broken hearts for body parts a graveled grave regales.

You wouldn’t guess, the yellow press, when out to make a ****,
will sell their soul (to dodge the dole) and feed the swine some swill –
a trenchant trope with inside dope that gives the crowds a thrill
(when mixed with tripe, they call it hype) and masks a bitter pill.

The tabloids reek of doublespeak – when did the stench begin?
In olden times, with paradigms, no doubt with but a grin;
but nowadays, in subtle ways, there’s far more discipline:
they scrawl their screeds neath headline ledes that give the tales a spin.

Within the fort a special court is hidden from your view
where sits a judge who’ll never budge, called Captain Kangaroo;
as justice bleeds, those evil deeds, like leaking what is true
will be convicted as predicted by the hangman’s crew.

A blue-eyed wight uncloaks the night and when (by chance, perhaps)
his whistle blows, the airwaves close, high crime’s kept under wraps
and those that sin prevail again – more feathers in their caps;
the price instead’s the leaker’s head, precluding a relapse.
Terry O'Leary Apr 20
Like God amassing gifts of gold and frankincense and myrrh,
vain potentates, possessed by pride that riches will confer,
depleted pillaged villages in pagan days of old…
With ******* privileges, their fortunes were foretold.

In feudal times, chaste clerics, cloaked, wrapped rings around the mind
with hymns of magic, mystic myths and figurines enshrined,
while blessing bayonet-like blades that mutilate and maim…
With ******* privileges, believers bore no blame.

In search of caramel colonies, some sailors set their sails
to conquer puppet provinces, for sovereignty prevails,
purloining wicked treasure troves which others claimed their own…
With ******* privileges, such sins sustained the throne.

Well, nowadays the quest proceeds, this time for ebon oil,
so peoples once again are caught within the serpent’s coil
and, pierced by fangs of greed and lust, death yields benign escape…
With ******* privileges, you’re free to rip and ****.

We wave the flags and beat the drums and often kneel to pray
to glorify our victories, bold, that happen far away;
but none salute the severed souls impaled upon a pike…
With ******* privileges, the riffraff look alike.

One day the moguls won’t agree on how to slice the pie;
they’ll spit and spat and, ***-for-tat, atomic barbs will fly -
but when the button’s finally pressed, they too will grace the heap…
With ******* privileges, the hole that’s hewn is deep.
Just a few lines for my mate M.'s amusement and diversion  
; - )
Terry O'Leary Nov 2020
Your lover’s drawing straws without you, time to bid farewell
he has no time for rhyme or reason, so it’s just as well.
Slip out the curtained window quick, the future winks and calls,
ignoring paths of pagan gods, where faulty footsteps fall.
Identify vague glimpses, cloaked and clustered in a heap
and sort out those you treasure most, you need or long to keep;
Forget about the epoch past, which wasn’t what you’d sought,
pursue instead remaining dreams before they come to naught.
          Reflect no more on what it was he’d meant for you,
          strike out ahead where something waits, has sent for you.

The graveyard night is haunted still, it hovers where you sleep
recalling souvenirs amassed, the ones that made you weep.
Your poets poised in dungeon vaults, though growing old and bald,
retrace the palsied pleas in dust, the ones that you once scrawled.
Except for runic proverbs carved on stone walls ill defined,
assumptions will not dog you that you dare to leave behind.
          The fortune-tellers waiting at the moat for you
          are kneeling there while setting sail a boat for you.

The road behind is empty now, the sky is painted black
so gather all the wisdom gained, no time for looking back.
Forego the orphans’ prophecies you’re tempted to pursue -
although they might be asked advice, they seldom have a clue.
Reject the secrets they disguise and lock behind their guile
but lie betrayed within the pits and ruins of their smile.
          They’re waiting with their rigid rules of thumb for you
          while beating on a perforated drum for you.

But days ahead will break again like waves before the dawn
while picking up the pieces left behind the passing pawn.
The joker wild defies the fools to read between the lines
in search of cryptic radiance the future world enshrines.
The sand-glass dribbles distant dunes, the clock is running late,
it’s now your time for passing through the open swinging gate.
          A noble knight awaits to clear the board for you
          when, soon, a crystal cup of wine is poured for you.
Terry O'Leary Jun 2020
With fascist fist, white CHAUVINist (whose christian name is Drek)
hailed pearly Knights in Kevlar tights who spurn the ebon fleck,
and joined the Kops enforcing stops which keep black pawns in check.

Floyd feared the Kops (most drenched in drops that racial rules distill),
so long confined, entrapped, entwined in whitewashed webs until
he drew the straw that lured the law: a twenty dollar bill

for cigs he bought (no ’twasn’t ***) while at the corner store
and when he left, they called it theft at which he turned and swore,
strode to his car (which wasn’t far), to meet the nevermore.

The Kops arrived and chaos thrived as justice was deployed:
patellas pressed, ’gainst neck and chest (which Chauvin so enjoyed) -
as Floyd lay cuffed, like candles snuffed his light of life waxed void.

A knee to neck? Yeah, what the heck, when forced to come to grips
with someone prone that fate has flown within a wind, who quips
“Please, I can’t breathe”… those words still seethe that labored past his lips.

With windpipe crushed, through time unrushed (eight minutes last so long),
Floyd’s face seemed bent with eyes intent, and Chauvin’s smile was strong;
with bated breath of pending death, a chill chased through the throng.

Well Drek knelt proud before the crowd (no need of secrecy)
for, being copped, Floyd’s breathing stopped, while knuckled neath the knee.
Yes, poor old Floyd had been destroyed – “Mamaaa...” his final plea.


A single soul... but on the whole, Floyd’s death’s a metaphor
of crush and shove, by those above, until we breathe no more,
with twisted faces, lacking graces, pressed upon the floor.

As with attacks against the blacks and others, be they poor
we’re never told the manifold of deaths within this war  -
we’ll bumble blind until we find just what we’re mourning for.

The ruling class perverts, alas, the press, like wanton *****,
to dupe, misguide and wholly hide that septic social sore
engulfing us in putrid pus that’s oozing from its core.

Without a clue as what to do, we’re thralled as heretofore,
but nonetheless with due finesse, there’s plenty to restore:
the common good and brotherhood, world peace for evermore.

We must embrace the human race, its oneness not ignore -
so for our part let’s make a start with each hand on an oar,
as mainsails swing to finally bring the freedom ship to shore.
Terry O'Leary Apr 2020
~12000 BC             Sabre Tooth Tiger
~  1650 BC             Mammoth
    1681                   Dodo
~  1890                   Falkland Islands Wolf
    1918                   Carolina Parakeet
    1938                   Schomburgk's Deer
~  1960                   Javan Tiger
    1973                   Tecopa Pupfish
    1975                   Round Island Burrowing Boa
    1979                   Dutch Alcon Blue Butterfly
    1994                   Golden Toad
    2000                   Pyrenean Ibex
    2002                   Baiji White Dolphin
    2004                   Black-faced Honeycreeper
    2006                   West African Black Rhino
    2015                   Pinta Island Tortoise
    20??                   **** Sapiens
No rhythm, no rhyme, and no reason
  Mar 2019 Terry O'Leary
Marshal Gebbie
I gaze into my crystal ball, discern amidst the haze
A world so far removed from that of now, it would amaze,
Where catapulting incidents collide like billiard *****
And sense defies belief as renaissance makes the calls.

Blueprints fresh from Internet supply the suitcase blast
Where the terrorist’s, simultaneously, ignite in cities cast
From Moscow to New York, Beijing to Berlin
Gay Paree to London town then way out east again,
Budapest, Jerusalem Calcutta burning all
And Tokyo is levelled in a ghastly nuclear pall.

Kneejerk reaction triggers contrails in the blue
Crisscrossing all the continents obliterating through
An overkill so vicious that in seconds it is past
And the living cling in horror, bearing witness… aghast.

Restraints are erased as the opportunists dash
Flotillas from the Spratleys sprint to occupy and cash
In on the minerals, oil and potential food supplies
Of uncontaminated nations found beneath Pacific skies.
Hindi, Jew and Muslim settle scores bereft with years
Of resentment accrued in a flood of blood and tears.

A sudden realisation of immensity of loss
Curtails the destruction in retrenchment across
The habitable outposts, the dearth of supply
And the daunting prospects of a nuclear winter sky.
Global collapse of all electronic gear
No power, no phones, and no cars now…for years.
Electromagnetic impulse put paid to all that
And the day is as dark as the cold night is black.

And here all we sit, in the here and the now
On the verge of catastrophes’ teetering tower,
With a fools pudgy finger just inches above
The nuclear button…and all that we love.
……You fear the insanity, sense the insane
Knowing that people like this are holding the reign?
Knowing that volatility strikes
Like the shot of a gun and the ****** of a knife.

I don’t have the answers to hand
But someone out there, knows how…and can.
The sands of time are running out


Planet Earth
6 March 2019
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