pomes about centring margins

I wrote these pomes as ‘resident prism poet’ at the Baptist Assembly in 2006. The theme for the Assembly was ‘Centring the Margins’ and these were written in the ‘alternative’ venue, Prism.

Tear along the dotted line
It said on the back of my driving licence: “Tear along dotted line”
I took it literally in my car one day and got myself fined
People don’t want me to be there: they curse and shake their fists
As they perform ice-dance pirouettes into a ditch
It seems that even though the centre is not reserved
Others dislike me being middle of the road cause it makes them swerve

Centring the margins
Havoc was caused on paper today when the margins moved into the centre of the page
The words didn’t know where to go as the margins interrupted the status quo
The margins were fed up with being marginalised and seen as incidental
To the structure of an orderly piece of writing: their presence almost accidental
The words at the centre of the page were confused by the unannounced arrival
And came up with many reactionary responses to ensure their survival
Such as: “We must have some sort of borders for order” to repel boarders
As the words expressed concern about the effects of post-dogmatic stress disorder

No room
There was no room in a local hotel for the northern couple
And no room in a settled society for the rabbi rebel
When he turned the tables on the powers that be
They centred his margins on a crucify-tree

If margins are centralised
And take over the middle ground
Does the centre feel marginalised
As they’re pushed to the surround
Coming in from the cold, from the fringe and margin
with the man whose mother was an ostracised virgin
it’s no wonder that this causes angst and opposition
while people struggle to remain in pole position
so instead let us expand the main place of focus
to include a wider variety of points of locus
Prophetic voice crying in the wilderness
with non-mainstream clothing and diet
Needs to shout loud in order to be heard
though most prefer him to be quiet
Not wanting to leave the comfort zone
while God-sent voice, uncomfortably persistent,
Demands to be heard and taken seriously
and seeks souls with whom to be resonant

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