Refugee poems

It’s not going to help.
None of the middling-to-frightful poems meant to shame ordinary mothers in ordinary homes are going to help. You won’t get ordinary people to take in refugee families because you dripped 3 or 4 verses of acrid and shaming poetry on them.

Maybe if you wrote some heartfelt and simple verse from the refugees’ point of view – something about how they see the people trashing their homes, or how refugees feel about the smugglers profiting from their terror – you’d humanise them for ordinary suburban mothers. The moment that happens, only sociopaths can ignore the need. The mountains of donations (cash, food and clothing) come from ordinary people who saw other ordinary people in need.

But start off some stumbling diatribe with jeering, sneering disdain for the ordinary person you’re attempting to guilt or frighten into generosity – and watch them turn away. They can’t help it; it’s just how humans are wired.
OK, that sneering spew of accusation may give you a shot of adrenaline/endorphins you enjoy (that’s also how humans are wired) but it won’t change things for refugees. Comes down to who you care for.

the thinker


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