Wednesday, 29 April 2015

The ballot box





I wrote this following a visit to an exhibition on in the Fruitmarket Gallery In Edinburgh.  It was a visit with my creative writing group to an exhibition of  Brazilian Art. The piece that impacted on me was 10 cut down black ballot boxes that held up the mirror to the lack of democracy in Brazil at that time; the artist as Antonio Dias and the date 1968.
I found myself drawn to them, me the political anorak, staring at the empty ballot boxes and living through a time of shifting political sands here in Scotland and across the UK. The reminder that democracy is precious and that those who do not vote, have no voice and remain unheard. My  hope is these changing times will result in electoral reform to reduce our democratic deficit in the UK and also create a new cultural of more collaborative politics, more responsive to the people. But to do that first we have to vote......

The Ballot Box

They are ten
Unopened, unheard
Their presence unsettling
Isolated connected
Black, open mouthed
They stand
In silence
Shouting quietly
Look at me
Compelling
Repelling

Those voices unheard
Those votes uncast
Present in those
Ten black cubes
Of lost opportunity
But in that silence
There is power
A cold black anger
And we
Are dared to listen


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