the night I read for Ant and Dec

the phonelines crash, I set them ablaze,

the night I read for Simon Cowell

I knew damn well how to turn a phrase

I admit I was nervous, but had to decide

after failing the poetry-ads for Nationwide,

poems for the hurt, lost and broken-hearted

giving them voice where hope has departed

plucking dreams up from the street

before they’re crushed by thoughtless feet,

so I catch a bus to Search For A Star

an impoverished poet can’t afford a car,

rehearsing my lines that bleed with truth

more raw than Rap, 1000% proof

drunk with words that fill my head

yet stumbling like the Walking Dead

on a tightrope of hope through a glimmering fog

between Boyband and juggler and dancing dog

that Saturday night I’m there on X-Factor

reading like a nuclear fast-breeder reactor

with poems that would trade success

for the salvation of the NHS

that puts the threat of climate change

above the needs of the Stock Exchange

poems that build bridges higher than walls

finding love in places where politics stalls,


through my wealth and celebrity life-style

and my TV-appearances with Jeremy Kyle

I advocate the lore of unification

and love-regeneration for every nation

or I would… given half the chance,

if I can only make these words of mine dance



Andrew Darlington
illustration: Claire Palmer





By Andrew Darlington

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