The state of the nation by Angela Caldin

Although I’ve been living here in Auckland for the last two years or so, I still read The Guardian online nearly every day. To say that recent events in the UK are baffling is an understatement. Matters seem to me to have taken a surreal turn with corruption embedded in organisations which are meant to have the public good at heart and to uphold the principles of law and order. It seems that those in high office can lie repeatedly and nothing happens. It seems that those around them have no interest in right and wrong, but only in what keeps them in their job. It seems that self- interest triumphs over integrity most of the time.

I was struggling with how to express my dismay at watching my homeland sink further and further into the mire, when this morning I saw this latest poem by the sublime Brian Bilston. It’s a parody of Rudyard Kipling’s poem ‘If’ which is the epitome of the British stiff upper lip. Bilston updates it brilliantly to take account of recent events:

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