Seven days – A Ballad Poem by Julie Easley & Three Words – A Linocut by M.S. Evans

Seven days

(after Rachel Long)

On Monday her Universal Credit
was cut by £20 a week.
She had nowhere to appeal.
They promised: we’re in this together
She said: I’m all alone

On Tuesday her Universal Credit
was cut by £20 a week.
She couldn’t pay her energy bill.
They promised: we’ll leave no-one behind
She said: I’m freezing

On Wednesday her Universal Credit
was cut by £20 a week.
She had to use a food bank.
They promised: we’re levelling up
She said: I’m hungry

On Thursday her Universal Credit
was cut by £20 a week.
She fell behind with her rent.
They promised: we’ll put you first
She said: I’m desperate

On Friday her Universal Credit
was sanctioned. She was 5 minutes
late because her child was ill.
They promised: we’ll support families
She said: I’m tired

On Saturday with her Universal Credit
sanctioned and no money coming in,
she sank further into debt
They promised: we’re here to serve you
She said: I’m drowning

On Sunday she crawled closer to the edge,
her screams cut short by a slimmed
down mental health service.
They promised: we’ll invest in the NHS
She said: they’re killing me

Three Words, A Linocut by M. S. Evans

Julie Easley is a working-class poet from Saltburn in the UK, she is published by Ek Zuban Press, Kirjastus Luul, Slice of the Moon books, Dreich magazine, StepAway magazine, Versification, Stone of Madness Press, Thrive Teesside, Culture Matters, and The Morning Star. Her film poems are published by Icefloe Press and Darlington Pride. Julie can be found on Spotify on the album ‘From the Ancestors,’ by Ron Whitehead & Gabriel Walker, and her poem ‘we are the Goddess,’ is available on BBC Tees Upload. Her audio poem ‘Teesside Streets’ is on the limited edition ‘The MdZ Estate LP. Twitter: @JulieEasley. YouTube Channel: Julie Easley Poet –

Banner & Art: “Agitate, a section from 3 Words ” a Linocut by M.S. Evans (c) 2022. MS Evans is a guest reader and editor on the Work & The Anthropocene Project for Ice Floe Press. She is a widely published author, a Pushcart nominated poet, and a visual artist with work in Feral, Black Bough, Ice Floe Press, and many other venues. She recently had a solo show of her photographic works in Butte, Montana. Twitter: @seanettleink.

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