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“I read the news today, oh boy I shouldn’t have bothered.” Jack said.

“They say don’t politicise a community’s genocide.” 

Genocide and the high rise was getting in the eyes of my penthouse view.

My penthouse view has always been askew with those, flats, I veritably spew. That monstrosity, I stand in indignant audacity on the 20th floor of my bespoke, be-spangled, state of the art, luxury penthouse apartment and tut.

“Who’d want to live on the 21st floor.”

The least they could do is “do-up” the outside, make it look pretty, a little less gritty. Like a scene from Eastenders or that one where Michael Caine chucks that chap off a building.

If the outside looked better it would make them feel pride, be less ashamed to hide in the gutter. Crap filled, trash strewn, banksy scrawled, grime’s a type of music now, what’s wrong with the Guggenheim, gutter.

I know it’s council but they’d do something about it if they really cared, get jobs if they really wanted one, they stand in line for their food bank vouchers, probably because they like it. They make a life from it.

I’ve paid for my penthouse view.

Meanwhile a memo is sent to the PM, handwritten in pen, it contains a suggestion that sprinklers might keep people safe. The PM reads this with distance in her eyes, trying to disguise the well meaning disdain she has for the poor.

A feeling programmed into her at birth. She’d never shirk her commitment to the few. Sprinklers seem sensible. A mundane decision is made. There are other priorities, on top of the pile. Put it in a file. A pyre of cladding will surely burn into her memory for years to come.

Out on the streets closer to home a small girl hasn’t seen her friend, Jacinda, for three weeks now.

“Mummy, where has my friend gone?”

Copyright John de Gruyther 2017

 

 

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