Here come the talking heads with that stew
Of mellow tones offering thoughts and prayers,
Pledges of shoulder-to-shoulder solidarity,
Promises of we’re here for you always and forever,
We will not let you down and this will not happen again,
Commitments to do this and that, vows
To change the world and our lives forever,
To learn lessons and act fast, to raid the thesaurus
To find ways to say nothing meaningful or sincere
But to make it sound like something heartfelt.
This is who and what we are, what we have become,
Mouthy, articulate, apoplectic, boohoo when it suits
But not a clue about how to act. React? Yes, but not act.
React on TV, on radio phone-ins shovelling bullshit,
In tweets, chicken nugget-size pithy and witty grunts,
As if they will make a jot of difference to any of it.
In this age of noise, in which there are more opinions
Than sewer rats, so-called leaders should learn
The art of shutting the hell up and have a go
At doing something above and beyond ego,
Something above and beyond self-preservation.
We can be shocked, horrified and saddened all we like
But we have no excuse for being useless.