A brand new UK tour of poetry & performance – from Lydia Towsey, Shruti Chauhan and Jean Binta Breeze MBE

AS IT WAS, STILL IT IS / MELLOW BAKU / #WhosYourNeighbour?

Many thanks to Mellow Baku for this #WhosYourNeighbour, Three the Hard Way contribution.

Mellow wrote the below piece in response to a photograph of World War Two, Muslim, Sikh and Hindu servicemen, shared on an anti ‘Britain First’ facebook forum with the caption: ‘Bloody Sikh, Hindu, Muslim Servicemen, coming over here, flying our spitfires, winning our wars… [sic]’. The picture, and Mellow’s posted poem in response were both subsequently removed by facebook for contravening their ‘community standards’. We’re very pleased to share the poem part here.

If you’d like to get involved by contributing a piece, please tweet us @3HardWayPoets along with the hashtag #WhosYourNeighbour – with a link to a responding work as text and/or as a recorded reading. For full details on the campaign see here.

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As it was, still it is

Swarms of spongers
taking the piss?
While britain still plunders
As it was, it still is.

History forgotten
facts changed and normalised
In a land that is rotten
with blood of the colonised

For peace and wealth they come
For things the Empire took
from their foremothers and sons
(But you won’t read that in a book)

Sons of oppressors still complain
while enjoying what they can afford.
Beneficiaries of material gain
Spoils of making a mess abroad.

Swarms of spongers
taking the piss?
Sounds like the Empire
As it was, it still is.

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Mellow Baku is a highly experienced singer-songwriter, jazz vocalist and vocal tutor, working across genres and performing internationally, including at: The Barbican and Southbank (London), The Knitting Factory (New York), North Sea Jazz Festival (Holland), BBC Live Events, Kings Place London & more. Jazz Saxophonist, Courtney Pine OBE hails her as ‘A new voice in British music, with an original blend of reggae soul and jazz. Superb voice, brilliant music, a must for all.’

Recent spoken word projects include touring alongside Zena Edwards, Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze and SureShot (London Liming, Nottingham and Sheffield for TILT/Renaissance One/Melanie Abrahams, who also produced her recent show of spoken word and song ‘Music of My Mind’, Curve Theatre Leicester.)

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