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Issue 268
September/October 2011
What Comes Next?


Roll Up! Roll UP!
Photograph: Jordan, © NASA

Photograph: Jordan, © NASA

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Roll Up! Roll UP!

Planet for Sale

Looking for a bargain?

Come on down.

It’s the sale of the century

Look around.

There are sights to see

And places to be

With way out cosmic activity.

This is a deal that you can’t refuse

It’s the kind of bet that you cannot lose, So come on down The price is right, I’ve got to sell this thing tonight.

Roll up, roll up, planet for sale,

Roll up, planet for sale.

Free of living things that roam,

Free of people and ozone,

I invite you to test my ware,

Free of any atmosphere.

Enjoy yourself as you get poorly

With no sign of a creepy crawly,

I promise you you’ll find no trees

And no flowers to make you sneeze.

Little Bo Peep has gone with her sheep, And Little Jack Horner dissolved in a corner, That Donald Duck has run out of luck, And Paddington Bear is no longer here.

The owl and the pussy cat went to sea

And then got lost in infinity,

Alive, alive, no,

Alive, alive, no,

Cockles and mussels are not,

And no snow!

Roll up, roll up, planet for sale,

Roll up, planet for sale.

Looking for a bargain?

Check this planet,

Not a thing is moving on it.

And just for you I’ll do a deal.

I’ll swap it for a decent meal.

Benjamin Zephaniah is a Rasta and performance poet.