Sunday, 29 July 2018

"Us and them" - Thought for Food Global Summit slam poem by Peter Bickerton, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2018

Us… and them.
As Pink Floyd said, after all,
We’re all just ordinary men
And women.

The media paints a painful picture.
Right versus left,
Black versus white,
Rich versus poor,
Humble versus might.

But a tinted lens
Blocks out shades of light
That might cast doubt
On crystal clear assertions.

The light shines
From every direction,
Reflects and refracts
Through multiple dimensions.

If, in election we’re defeated,
We must reach out and make the best of it,
Not retreat into bubbles
And preach out against it.

Yes, Donald Trump is a prick,
And it’s very easy for me to give him stick -
But he’s been nominated for a peace prize
And South Korea is backing it.

Multispectral thinking
Means looking from different perspectives…

Whether a climate change denier,
Or indeed - a believer,
Opulent omnivore,
Or frugal vegan…

We’re all complicit...

I want to to buy a fancy car
I want to travel near and far
I want to fly to Zanzibar
We're all complicit.
I want the latest Apple phone
I want to let my data roam
I want my life engraved in chrome
We're all complicit.
I want the latest fashion trend
I want to watch the money I spend
I want my Primani H&Emmed
We're all complicit.
I want my showers steaming hot
I want the stove to heat my pot
I want it all I want the lot
We're all complicit.


And what are we complicit in?
Overpriced tonic and German Gin?
Russian interventions in overseas elections?
Cambridge Analytica and Donald Trump’s erections?

<Google search> Ivanka Nudes </>

And there it appears on the news.

That wasted polar bear.
We all know the image, a billion shares.
Skin sagging over bones.
We pretend to care,
Hashtag “save the polar bear.”
But we don’t care about that bear…

As the climate quickly changes
We feign despair.
The mirror fills with steam
As the hypocrite
Shampoos his hair…

...we’re all complicit.

<Google search> Extinction </>
<Google search> Deforestation </>
<Google search> Environmental destruction </>

OK Google: What’s inside my smartphone?

Oil for plastic,
Copper, zinc -
And where do we find it?
We mine it.

And where do we look,
Once the reserves run dry?
We plunder the rainforests
And the animals still die.

It’s easy to chastise big business, big pharma, big ag:
But are we any wiser?
And where would we be?

Paper straws are a soggy needle in an oil-fueled haystack.

To uproot the status quo,
We must innovate without
And renovate from within.

Like all of these ten, wonderful finalist teams
Next generation dreams:
From snails to feathers,
Water and weather,
Fertilising grains,
And optimizing value chains.
Dairy and yoghurt,
Carrot-based chocolate,
Coating for shelf life
And respect for refugee life.


So a slice of positivity,
Through all this complicity.
In this globalised society
We have greater connectivity.

Yes, maybe a touch of human interaction
Would gain us a little more social traction
But just look at the tide of social action
Being played out through touch screens and optical fibres

Across the seas,
We’re making waves
With people, who otherwise,
We’d never have made acquaintance.

E agora cá estou eu no Brasil
Prazer em conhecer todos vocês, eu estou privilegiado de estar aqui nessa cidade maravilhosa.

I would never even be here if I hadn’t reached out
On Facebook, to Crissy Spice,
About Thought for Food and feeding the world
With ideas as much as calories.
Like every one of us here,
From Agriman to Agrospheres,

Our biggest fears hold us back,
And keep us apart.
But together we’re set.

And where better to start than in Rio?
The House of Carijo...
Between the mountain and the sea,
Where ten finalist teams
Have come together to pitch
And learn, and share, and care,
As part of a global family
Of next generation dreams
That with Thought for Food
Win or lose,
Have every chance
To become


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