Skies remain uncontrailed-blue.
Birds claim it, saturate with music while
phone-in programmes clog with whines.
Disgruntled folk stamp sandaled feet,
rail at their imprisonment on this isle.
Heatwaves and wild swimming no subsitute,
they crave foreign climes, chips and villas,
rage at their astroturfed semi-detached lives.
Meanwhile the radio whispers death.
Thousands, thousands, men, women, babies
drown clutching the future. Hope not enough
to buoy them across the Med.
Illustration: Claire Palmer