Fanfare for the Dustmen


I’ve watched you do what you do

And love your balls!

To do what others wouldn’t,

That cigarette hanging from your mouth.

You are a man and no mistake.

Keeping us safe from rats, disease and the plague,

that rubbish a plague on my eyes.

If the bin stayed full, check the faces, the surprise.

I have seen rubbish burning in the streets at sunrise

rubbish tipped unceremoniously into pristine forest,

dumped out into rice paddy

beyond the house walls.

I have seen heroes,

collect it up

men and sometimes women with balls.

Face sooty from rice in the pot at breakfast

By the tracks.

They emerge in rags, chimney sweeps from

Dark satanic mills,

Their recycling while my western eyes drink them in,

Busting a gut trying to think them,

Trying to be a fly on their interior walls.

Getting the view from there.

There is no fanfare,

But I have seen heroes.