Poem for June

A poem for Kenmure Street

Stand-off /Home schooling

he shouldn’t be there
under that van
the man that’s lain down
in Kenmure Street
he could get hurt

two neighbours of ours
my Daddy says
the van’s for them
they shouldn’t be here
West Minister says

all the people just standing there
all the police lined up in rows
six giant horses
brown white humungous
outside our window
I’m not scared

me and Ellie
Mummy and Daddy
Leven Street, Glasgow, Scotland, the World, Milky-Way Galaxy, the Universe, Space
Mummy and Daddy
me and Ellie

I’m not scared
outside our window
brown white humungous
six giant horses
all the police lined up in rows
all the people just standing there

West Minister says
they shouldn’t be here
the van’s for them
my Daddy says
two neighbours of ours

he could get hurt
in Kenmure Street
the man that’s lain down
under that van
he shouldn’t be there

By Denise Steele

First published in The Scottish Review 26th May 2021. Featured Image shows the recent protests in Kenmure Street, Glasgow, at the attempted deportation of two residents. Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images.

On the morning of 13 May 2021, two Sikh men of Indian origin living on Kenmure Street in the Pollokshields area of Glasgow were taken from their home and detained by the Home Office in a van on the street for alleged immigration violations. In response, neighbours and advocates organized a sit-in protest and surrounded the van for eight hours, during which time the Police Scotland became involved, until they were released.