The Aftermath

The Aftermath
[The day after the General Election 8 May 2017]

Well it’s all over now
Ballot boxes unlocked, their contents strewn
Eager hands have sifted and sieved, unfolded the leaves
Attentive eyes scanned, sorted and stacked these expressions
of the democratic will.   As each separate pile is then
aggregated for the various candidates. Height of bundles
a barometer of popular support for each protagonist

As the feverish activity reaches a climax checks
and even double checks will be made, a recount may be demanded
The final summation then reported to
The Returning Officer, whose fiefdom for the night
Is the Counting Station for that Parliamentary constituency

When all doubts are resolved the Officer will
Call for silence and then, arraigned with all
the aspiring candidates, a pregnant calm will descend
And with due solemnity, the result will be announced
Amidst cries of triumph and groans of dismay
The winner will receive the congratulations
Of losers who will shake hands, with rictus smiles
Ill disguising their disappointment – at least
If they had believed victory had been possible

The winner, as if at the Oscars, will pronounce a long
litany of thanks to everyone – from the dutiful spouse
to the intern who made the tea at the Party Office
Of course, not forgetting, you the voters!

And so off they go into the dawning light
Some to party as they celebrate success
Others, whose expectations have been dashed,
Or even as unseated MP’s to an obscure uncertain future
And what of us the voters? We have done our duty
Do we believe that the new incumbent will fulfill
Their promise of being the Member for all their people?

But none might easily have predicted the actual outcomes
Only the Exit Polls were able to alert us to the likely totals
And as the night wore on the correlation between these indicators
and the eventual reality became quite stark for all to see
Some famous familiar faces suddenly stripped of power
Years of thankless service gives no immunity
Other aspirants thrown into the limelight
Even some actors who had been hiding in the wings recalled
to play their part

Thus a new political landscape took shape in which
we discovered that the people had made choices
which our politicians had not expected or not desired
And once again the shape of the future even  more uncertain
But that’s democracy – we must live with it!

Ken Fisher

Voting Day

Voting Day – Thursday 4th May 2017

[This is NOT the actual voting paper]

Once again here is your chance to exercise your choice
As citizens and electors you can express your voice
Despite the inconvenience of having to go along to vote
Or perhaps you have already done so, sending in that postal note

The candidates in these local elections are all so keen to serve
And I hope that all this waiting doesn’t make them lose their nerve
Each party sent out their leaflets making their intentions manifest
Promising to all of us to do their very best

It is a wonder that every party promises their own unique solution
To all that ails us from road traffic, poor schools, even pollution
All that we must do is cast our vote for their fine candidate
And joy for e’er thereafter is bound to be our fate

So whatever your views might be on local politics
And your doubts and fears that they really can things fix
It is better that you cast your vote in the democratic way
And thus, at least, you somehow contrive to have your say

One problem this time that may cause some confusion
Is the fact that we might be under some delusion
That these local votes are about issues far more national
Let’s hope this fact does not result in choices quite irrational

Nonetheless it is up to us, all those who cast their vote
To believe choosing is worthwhile, so let us not lose hope
In the power of the people to influence the future
It is the body politic which we must always nurture


Ken Fisher

See also: Election Time

and also: Pop Up Election