The High Street

Oh, British High Streets, how long will you last,
Civic remnants rooted in the past?
Pedestrianize, hold Sales, but no great boom
Can save you from inevitable doom.
For Walmart, fiercest of all Trojan horses
Will stamp to smithereens your fine concourses.
Dressed up as ASDA, its malign predations
Have gutted many a town in other nations.
It builds those ugly, penny-pinched bazaars
And hectares of grim asphalt for the cars.
Your Smiths, your Boots, and others, name your name,
Are pawns in the monopolistic game.
Incomes decline, and with them town life stutters,
As tradesmen leave and firms put up their shutters.
The globalizers win, and thus we reap
A joyless, deadened town, but shoes are cheap.

January 2004