Appointed apparitions, although
your composition’s pale and lacks
the resilience of past administrations
I like to think you’ll break the silent
habit of the understudy, choosing,
when your duplicates step into the sun,
to turn left when they turn right
as solid opposition.
But since there is
five years to plot, the lost electorate
will wait as they have waited, deep
in nowhere dark, conceding their regrets
amongst the disappointed shades,
for the dreamed alternative to rise up
from the backbenches and eclipse the light.
John Challis is just completing a PhD in Creative Writing at Newcastle University on the Poem Noir. He has won a Northern Promise Award from New Writing North, and his work has appeared or is forthcoming in anthologies and journals including Butcher’s Dog, Iota, Magma, The Pushcart Prize XL, The Rialto and has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4.