I can’t even begin to imagine what buffoon thought Benjamin Zephaniah was going to be pleased to be offered an OBE – hadn’t they ever read his stuff? But still, it seems, some maroon decided to offer him one, and it’s given him a great chance to talk about just why a medal called ‘The Order Of The British EMPIRE’ is unacceptable in modern britain – The Empire???? That agent of repression, racism, slavery, imperialist supression of native democracy and self-rule??? yeah, that’s really something to wear with Pride…
Anyway, Benjamin puts in best in his article in today’s Guardian.
and if you’ve never heard Benjamin, check him out – he’s a great poet, and an even better performer of his own work. One of my most vivid childhood TV memories was Benjamin Zephaniah performing one of his poems on a kids TV show in the very early 80s – the image is still clear in my mind.
Soundtrack – lots of unreleased recordings from the last year – I need to start collecting some of this stuff together and deciding what to do with it!by