Once again, Poetry 24 has very kindly chosen to publish one of my poems. This time it is No Laughing Matter.
This poem was inspired by a recent news story and Panorama programme which uncovered the investment funds used by charities, which included the arms trade, tobacco and alcohol companies. At first glance this seems incomprehensible; how can charities that do such good work be helping to fund the companies they are working against?
Well, the truth is that many of them are hamstrung by the law. Legally they must put their investments somewhere safe that will provide a good return. After all if you are giving a charitable donation you don't want it wasted on a stock market gamble do you. But therein lies the problem.
It is the multinational companies with all the money (who are usually the nastiest) who actually help and lobby the lawmakers into providing laws that ensure that even charitable donations end up in their own coffers. Their greed knows no bounds.
So please don't stop giving to charity. It does a lot of good work and in the long run will save people's lives and turn other people's lives around. Do, however, protest as much as you like about the law being in favour of the richest.