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The Web Poetry Corner - James Bredin - Toronto Garbage Strike

Toronto Garbage Strike


James Bredin

Strikes come and go but garbage strikes linger,
Strikers scream "Scab!" pointing a big fat finger,
Demonstrate and demonize and walk off the job,
Rhetoric of the union; muster and mobilize the mob.

We’ll maintain negotiations tomorrow at the table,
Good because the place is smelling like a stable,
Garbage men are not considered an essential link,
Until it is confirmed that the scent is now a stink.

It takes time while these pompous politicians ponder,
And consider their options and delay a little longer,
Firemen and policemen are considered vital jobs,
Why not garbage men; are they down and just slobs?

Politicians and union types like to postpone decisions,
Balance on the fence and thereby circumvent derisions,
The mounds of garbage express they’ve gone to excess,
Make these men essential service - that’s easy to express.

These rotting mounds of garbage every day climb higher,
While excited union guys call the city nothing but a liar,
And the pickets hold their signs up as the tension mounts,
Vast variations of our system should be taken into account.

The mayor offered nine percent and they said, "That’s fine."
But they want job security from now ‘til the end of time,
They don’t want privatization - that’s a union sin,
And now we’ve got an overloaded piled up garbage bin.

While pizza boxes, pop cans and Styrofoam plates,
From overflowing garbage bins and broken wooden crates,
Turn the City of Toronto into an odoriferous affair,
From Yonge Street to Bloor Street and all along St Clair.

And the garbage piles higher, as high as the sky,
While each side delays, denies or decides to defy ,
Putrifying garbage in the hot summer sun,
Sends its own message that this wont be won.

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