I wrote this poem shortly after I arrived to Heathrow this winter and was told that everybody had to wait outside until at least 3 hours before their
flight was scheduled to leave (i.e. when check-in opened). They had a couple of marquises (tents) set up outside where you could wait before they let
you in but there wasn't any heating and it must've been -5 to -10 degrees Celsius outside. I went along with it for a bit but I was shivering after
about 20 minutes and the toilets they'd set up were too small to take your suitcase into, it was really poorly organised. Bear in mind, most people
had set off early for the airport to avoid traffic since heavy snow had just fallen that week across the UK. The worst thing was that the terminal
building itself was virtually empty on that particular day - why were they making everyone wait outside in the cold? I ended up talking to this guy
for a bit and I told him that I was just going to bluff my way in so I could at least go inside and have a coffee while I wait for checkin in the
warmth and I encouraged him to do the same. However, he was more than happy to just conform to the guidelines: 'sit outside and freeze until we say
so' and wait about for a few more hours. Although the poem reflects larger issues too, this was my main inspiration - the British or I suppose
worldwide willingness to conform to authority - regardless of what they are conforming to. The language is a bit flamboyant by my standards, but hell,
I was in a flamboyant mood.
Queuing in the Name Of:
A communal mind-numbing marquis offers shelter
from the incompetence-fuelled inconvenience.
Indecisive whispers compliment the ferocity of nature,
all-encompassing and alone with itself in existence.
From whence it came?
Who planted the subtle suppositions that,
like benign bacteria, constantly consume
the disciplined delusions of my peers?
An entity from within,
a fragment of the universal whole,
resides deep down and quietly insists from time to time
that we are all one, an illusory order
evolved from chaos; partly accidental, coincidental
and beautiful, partly malicious and contrived.
Alas, sat here humbled by my
total dependence on her temperament,
we must remain indefinitely and infinitely frozen