Park Bench Tales and other writings

Thoughts and writings reflecting the poet within and the activist

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One hand behind your back

One hand behind your back

With one hand firmly tied behind your back

You can only defend you are not allowed to attack

There’s a border with the enemy that cannot be crossed

Like driving with a windscreen you are not allowed to defrost

The enemy sends missiles launched from within their land

But you must wait until they cross the border if you understand

Who would want to be an archer with only one eye

The handicaps we impose simply mean more people will die

Imagine the boxer with one hand behind his back

Forced to defend and prohibited from attack

Pummelled by an opponent until battered and bruised

His capacity to fight on equal terms being refused

Tanks are available but there is a limit placed on these

For it seems we are unable to see the wood for the trees

We turn a blind eye as the enemy imports missiles and drones

Even though they do so to target civilian homes

No action will be taken on the sources of supply

Should we always look the other way? Can you tell me why?

We are watching a brave people being brought to their knees

Even though we could have given them far greater expertise

We pretend we do not want to risk any escalation

Watching whilst the enemy takes advantage of that situation

Let us give them the support and then let them attack

Until the hand that have we have held behind the back

Copyright: David Hopcroft June 2023

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Дитячий крадіжок Child Stealer

Дитячий крадіжок

Люцифер заснував свою ненависть на дивній вірі

Винищити людей шляхом індоктринації

Але він не зміг розчавити дух, який лежав внизу

Як тоді диявол може перейти до підкорення?

Як злий дух, який вільно блукає в найтемнішу ніч

Приходить кігтяна рука, що проникає через стійкі двері

Брудна справа ганебного, поки диявол ховається з поля зору

Проголошення, що він один визначає будь-який закон

Дитина, вирвана з ліжечка або матері матері

Хто там, щоб слухати крики

Хто встане, щоб зупинити цю шкоду

Як ми можемо спокійно спати з такими мріями?

Дитячий викрадач продовжує свою роботу з невеликим перериванням

Люди, яким загрожує диявольська інструкція

Чи можемо ми ігнорувати жахи цієї сатанинської корупції

Чи заплющуємо ми очі на масове викрадення?

Тут немає газових камер, але намір такий самий

Люди будуть знищені повільним винищенням

Викрадені діти вкрали, а потім дали нове ім’я

Терор індоктринації наступного покоління

Вчив вірити, що Вельзевул правий

Вихований для продовження зла своєї спадщини

Там, де правда переставлена і свобода перелякано

Давайте стояти з Україною, щоб зламати єресь

Авторські права: Девід Хопкрофт червень 2023 року

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This world that I live in is not an illusion

The world is a selfish expression of all that we are

Leaders prepared to kill and maim for their brief moment of glory

Our day to day lives might well be the first chapter of a horror story

The arrogance that goes with the discharge of sewage into rivers and streams

We are building a land where nobody cares and nobody cleans

We shall keep burning oil until the very last drop has gone

If you are asking who cares the answer may be none

Is there really a green country? Can you name one?

We have discarded plastic to choke up our seas

For a throwaway land where you just do as you please

Why is it we look the other way with such ease?

There is poverty knocking on every door

Food banks for all those folks with no money for the store

Politicians claiming that nobody is really poor

Sweeping truth under a red carpet laid upon the floor

Money squandered on fashion just for one night out

Closing their eyes to the homeless that live round about

The world that I live in just seems so unreal

For the wealthy this world might be their idea of paradise

With refugees starving by the millions do we really think that is nice

Your future is burning before you and you are paying the price

Copyright: David Hopcroft May 2023

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Refugee 2


They hid in the trucks they came in a boat

Fleeing from hunger and violence to keep life afloat

For the sex trafficker they were such easy prey

How easy it had become to lure them away

To be sold into an underworld of prostitution

The victims of yet another economic revolution

Home was a country that only offered poverty

A land torn apart by war corruption and vanity

Enslaved by leaders who told them they were free

Whilst the world closed their eyes to reality

Their choice was submission followed by rape

Their only hope was to try to escape

From a land where you either kill or get killed

Villages where nobody cared that blood was spilled

The world was content to look on with its blind eye

Who really cared if they were to live and die

They needed rare metals the gas and the oil

They saw no horrors from which to recoil

Who was to care about the plight of a refugee

Can’t you see really its for the good of our economy

Copyright: David Hopcroft May 2023

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She did not like the book and so she complained

About the library from which the book had been obtained

There were words and phrases beyond her comfort zone

She moaned to her parents as soon as she got home

Their first reaction was that this book must be banned

Then the situation kind of got out of hand

They decided the book should really be rewritten

So that those nasty bits could be hidden

The narratives really had to be changed

Some events of necessity would have to be rearranged

Even though a truth may become estranged

They sent me a copy of the revised edition to review

Showing how the narrative had been changed to protect you

Of the people who queued to leave their foreign homes

For a free passage on the tall sailing ships

To seek out a new life in a paradise overseas

Employment and a new home were provided to please

How the kindly plantation owners showed how they cared

For those who had fled horror and how their lives were spared

The wealth and riches of the new land could then be shared

A proper version was written of the nation’s history

The rainbow pictures painted of equality

Now the books are so much better don’t you see

Our children need to be told the truth I’m sure you agree

You might find this a more comforting version of their reality

There are still some books that await to be rewritten

The one where a girl loved a girl and was smitten

The book where a boy played with a doll was clearly wrong

I heard the governor kicked up a dance and song

His disciples nodded and followed like sheep quietly along

Those books had to be altered so they would belong

In a society that had to be carefully constructed

To match the dream that was being structured

The girl now dressed for the boys at night

The boy found an automatic rifle to his delight

They married and had children of course all were white

The young girl could now go to school

Unaware that she had become the fool

For the books now defined her new position

So clearly as being one of total submission

Copyright: David Hopcroft May 2023

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What is it that you fear (English)

What is it that you fear?

What do you fear so much that you tremble

At the little piece of stick held in my hand

A piece of wood can hardly be a threat

One that encases a small sliver of graphite

That makes a mark upon this white paper sheet

The simple words that I might assemble

You seem to see as danger to your land

Something that has left you angry and upset

Just the stub of a pencil yet you take fright

In the words on the paper you fear defeat

Young men assemble and are sent to a border

A thousand tanks are lined up along the road

Railroad wagons are piled high with shells

Bombs are being loaded in the bays

Conscripts with fresh faces are looking confused

All rather anxious as they await your order

Will you feel more secure when the missiles explode

Did you see the faces of mothers saying their farewells

For a few words you decided to set a country ablaze

Hoping mines will maim before they’re defused

A few sounds I might make and then transpose

The musician who writes verses for a song

Priests in the pulpits preaching God’s word

Short stories published for all to read

All seem to be a threat that you despise

A fear my lips may utter a few lines of prose

The chorus you dislike you determine is wrong

Alternative opinions you seem to find absurd

Your face red with anger craving power and greed

Though history tells us your justification is all lies

You seem happy your warships point their guns our way

That your missiles are carrying out genocide

You seem convinced the more you kill the more you are right

The only thing you know seems to be how to destroy

Creating a legacy of destruction hatred and fear

Does it matter to you thousands are dying every day

Inside your tower at your table you have chosen to hide

Is killing now the only way that you avoid fright

Then writers artists and singers will continue to annoy

So tremble some more for these words will not disappear

Copyright: David Hopcroft February 2023

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Measuring War

Measuring War

Sitting behind a desk a general on either side

Old white men determining a country’s fate

An established method that seeks to hide

The side of war to which we need to relate

A procedure well-rehearsed for the press

Who swallow whitewashing words with ease

Nobody wants to ask questions to undress

Locked news where they discarded the keys

They tell of the losses and of the gains

Destruction of vehicles and of heavy tanks

The downing of so many aeroplanes

A killing of generals and other high ranks

Missiles fired from long range to cause fear

Enemy troops measured by numbers killed

These are the successes they wish us to hear

A suppression of reality and blood spilled

The reality that is about young lives lost

Of those starved and dying in pain

The dead and displaced. Who counts that cost?

Behind the table we hear the same old refrain

When all is over who will be held to account

Winners or losers or are both to blame?

Families destroyed They measure the amount

In dollars and trade such is the shame

Hospitals shelled with the sick dying inside

An attempt to destroy a culture by extermination

Even food and water the very basics are denied

Just another repeat of the age old aberration

They will raise up markers on the mass graves

There will be money for a monument in a square

Someone will carry a banner proclaiming ‘Jesus Saves’

They should carry another saying ‘You didn’t care’

Soon there will be loans for buying new tanks

Leaders sitting around a table when all is done

A country destroyed Are we supposed to give thanks?

Will we learn the old lesson a war is never won?

Copyright: David Hopcroft March 2022


The Return

The Return

Kateryna’s first memory of the farm

Gazing at fields of wheat waving in the breeze

Seeing chickens run in and out of the barn

Scratching for food beneath the trees

A child watching sunflowers follow the sun

Soon she was the devushka learning to drive

She would lie in the orchard listening to bees hum

Learned how to collect honey from the hive

They left when the missiles screamed overhead

Bomb craters on fields where wheat was to be grown

That year there would be no grain for bread

They took a last look as the shell hit their home

Built after holodomor as their family abode

When starvation was the weapon used

There would be mines laid on the road

Hell’s doors opening as humanity was abused

History repeated by the same evil force

Poisoned by the devil that ran in his veins

Freedom’s grave opened Satan was the source

A world that listened to his obnoxious claims

Years were to pass before Kateryna returned

Her husband in a mass grave after a missile strike

Her parents died as a hospital burned

The child in her arms the only shining light

How do you rebuild after so many lives are lost?

Can you forgive an aggressor and those refusing aid?

You cannot use money to pretend to count the cost

Are the mass graves there just to safeguard trade?

Kateryna set about the task of rebuilding her farm

Hoping one day wheat would again sway in the breeze

Wanting to see chickens run in and out of a barn

Watching them scratching for food beneath trees

David Hopcroft March 2022

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When I needed a neighbour

When I needed a neighbour

I am needing a neighbour, are you there?

Are you there? Do you care?

I am needing a neighbour, are you there?

The children who are dying

Do they matter to you

Are you there?

Where are the neighbours, do they care?

Do you care? Are you there?

In your parliament looking smug Are you there?

Our people who are starving

Do they matter to you

Are you there?

Children screaming in the shelters, do you care?

Is this fair? Do you care?

Leaders wine and dine we bury dead Are you there?

Your people want to help us

But you’re closing your eyes

Are you there?

We are cold, bombs are falling, do you care?

Do you care? Don’t just stare

Save your neighbour from a bear Are you there?

When your people want to help

Why do you keep us out

Don’t you care?

When you need a neighbour we’ll be there

We’ll be there We’ll be there

Wherever you may be we’ll be there, we’ll be there

And we’ll show our love to all

You are our neighbour

And we care

(Apologies to Sydney Bertram Carter who wrote the original)

David Hopcroft March 2022

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The New Story Of Noah

The New Story of Noah

In a country not so far away

An evil beast went into a rage

Threatening murder every day

The world had entered a new age

The beast threatened to lash out as those who were near

His actions were intended not for love but for fear

His neighbour could see that his intent was clear

Whilst others looked on and said ‘Oh Dear’

Noah knew he could not look away

The murderous beast was prepared

Whilst others said ‘You’d better pray’

‘We’d like to help you but we’re scared’

The evil beast beast like Faust became the Devil’s bride

With four horses of the apocalypse he would ride

Noah prepared to defend his people and their pride

Whilst others hastily found somewhere to hide

Noah began to build his defence

An ark that would bring his people peace

To Noah this action was only common sense

Knowing what the devil would unleash

He appealed for the help of others to build his ark

Noah knew the devil’s bite came after the bark

He appealed once more as skies became dark

Looking to the west the skyline was stark

Boris the joiner spoke out

‘Hey I could spare a small nail’

Joe the carpenter then gave a shout

‘I’ll donate a little wooden pail’

Hell’s fury was then unleashed upon the innocent

The crazed madness of the devil was never spent

In the background a cockerel said he might spare a cent

A bishop promised a collection since it was Lent

The devil looked and the ark he saw

Furious he opened Armageddon’s door

Starting the world’s first nuclear war

Here it ends, there can be no more

David Hopcroft March 2022