by Edward Mackinnon
There’s a suit that hangs in a wardrobe
And used to be worn in court
With a wig and a gown made of silk,
All of the forensic sort.
Crafted from a lightweight fabric,
Plain-woven and wrinkle-prone,
Fit for a judge’s funeral,
Patternless and monotone.
The lining might be synthetic
Though that can’t be verified
But outwardly it’s passable,
Deadly dull but dignified.
It likes to be seen in chambers
Where important people talk
And whenever a lobbyist whispers
It’s even been known to walk.
It’s rumoured to have won a vote
For the most delectable suit.
It props itself up on a platform
But can’t hide the fact that it’s mute.
It’s not safe to be worn in a crisis
Because it falls apart at the seams
Like a devious boss’s pledges
Or a mouse’s best laid schemes.
In truth it’s quickly grown threadbare
And now almost everyone knows
This so-called mantle of leadership
Is like the Emperor’s new clothes.
It’s not a matter of fashion,
It’s not a question of taste,
This sartorial abomination
Must be discarded and replaced.
Hard-wearing clothes of working folk
Would look better in the public sphere,
Male or female or unisex,
Colourful instead of austere.
Made by people with dignity
̶ Not in sweatshops that are dark and sordid ̶
Whose craft is properly recognized,
With maker and wearer rewarded.