Union Songs

three poems by Jim Sharp©Jim Sharp

worker against worker competition
[creates its own imperatives]

because we're so gude at seeming so servile
they think we can't think things thru
and yet! how mistaken they be
we've allus got our concealed gifts of thought.
this will be proven deadly true
when the right left day dawns
then they shall hear our voices
our mighty deeds, our monumental social continuum.
a raging movement will herald that day
cleaving the top end of town asunder
and all talking shops will tremble
and all dynasties will come crashing down.

exploitation a yesteryear right

things ain't as they seem
when workers spare cash goes on
dope-hope to overcome social/civil alienation
yet! unbeknowningly they daily
partake in stoking our red dawn
meanwhile fire storms rage in breasts &
class solidarity lends us strength
where emails thru cyber will not serve
s/he pounds the hard hat & shades fall off
the system reeks of blood
as a state withers on the vine
at the minute social frustrations be gaseous
and meantime's two-fingers-ten
lightly dance the keyboards &
cyberspace seems alive with action
and yet!
t'll take wave after wave of conscious prolies
in unionism to take town & city streets.

a new social order

when capitals exploitation profits rides the boom
spin-docs gloss over our labour surplus
when over supply gluts the market place &
profits 'it rock bottom then poverty & pauperism
'aunts both the north & south alike
when your systems failin' humanity
mass anger & fear runs far & wide
when capital no longer holds supreme rule
and seems beyond its used by date
then gated gates be armed by state & private thugs
when on your lies lie social disorder
and spontaneous revolts be the social order
when out of all this class chaos comes
our social continuum complexity "EUREKA"


Many thanks to Jim Sharp for permission to add these poems to the Union Songs collection.

Jim writes:
"I worked in the meat industry in England and here from 1947 until 1985. Those last 25 years were on the chain as a boner. In 1985 400 meatworkers were made redundant from the then most modern meatworks in oz at that time, which the bosses closed down never to open again as an example to other meatworkers how far capital was prepared to go to discipline militancy, full stop! We were at the time the most militant meat shed in oz and some of us were blacked listed never to work again.

I've had poems published in anti-war/peace newsletters here in Queensland over the years and one published with a letter in the miners magazine Common Cause called "Moura" about the mid 1990s mining disaster and one in Seeing Red along with an article called "Owd Norm" which was about "shared " union and work experience at Borthwicks meatworks over 15 years"

Return to top of page