You can tell with the piles of tab ends
On the pavement who’s renting; by
The increase of open air venting
As outcasts gather together to
Exchange their smoking stories.
Further along from the sublet set,
And their regenerated terraces,
Are old ladies who moved in when
Original windows still worked and
Now sell tobacco out their back doors.
Young mothers come to gather half
Price leaf, cut with less combustible
Stuff to save the cost, and those old
Deep creased Social Club bucks
Buy a dozen pouches to pass on.
The migrant workers bring their
Own brands; ships discharge bulk
Contraband; door stop knockers
Sell separates and medicine men
Promote the best smoke repellents.
Advertisements have been banned
And sponsorship ripped from sport,
Though you can still pick up a pack
From every corner store, although
Closed Public Houses abound.
But you can’t rid the kids of their
Birthrights, after all it’s what dad
Did, and died for it, in order to stay
Independent of the need vended by
The property wars of noughties greed.