A New Year’s Resolution for left radicals!

Time to put Shelley’s optimistic exhortation into practice!

Allan Todd writes: In case you’re struggling to find a New Year’s Resolution worthy of the Brexshit, Covid and Climate Crisis s**t-storm that 2022 is already shaping up to be, you’ll struggle to find something that beats this poem from that brilliant radical and satirical poet, Elvis McGonagall:


[Dedicated to the memory of Jo Cox]


This scepter’d isle is now a nation of landlords

This realm’s a retail park for oligarch and sheik

Waterloo sunset has been sold for a crock of gold

We’ve been pimped out to pin-striped bastards on the make


The banker’s got the whole world in his wallet

The robber baron blusters in his boardroom chair

The squire rules at will from his mansion on the hill

The politician is a multi-millionaire


Come all you Diggers, you Ranters, you rebels

Shout from the rooftops, make your voices heard

Come all you artists, you thinkers, you dreamers

Share your vision, unbowed and undeterred


Come all you tempest tossed poor huddled masses

You sick and tired, you overworked and underpaid

Come all you burger flippers and baristas

You nurses, teachers, carers, chambermaids


Rise up like Shelley’s lions after slumber

Leave your mind-forg’d manacles behind

Rise up together and reclaime this other Eden

Rise up and have the courage to be kind


You’ll find MANY more inspiring – & VERY amusing – poems in his excellent collection, Viva Loch Lomond:

Elvis McGonagall’s poems for those on the right (ie. LEFT!!) side of the barricades!


Allan Todd is a member of Left Unity, an ecosocialist/environmental and anti-fascist activist, and author of Revolutions 1789-1917 and the forthcoming (Spring 2022) Trotsky: The Passionate Revolutionary

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