Kafka’s The Sanction : A Personal Odyssey

Without having done anything wrong
I woke up one morning to find
that I had been ” Sanctioned ” ,
For without knowing it I had ,
at some point in the past
inadvertently expressed an opinion ;

It was that which gave them cause
to raise their euphemistic ” doubt ” ,
then pass on that ” doubt ” to others ,
who then embellished and modified the opinion
I had been reported as having uttered ;

They passed on the rebooted version of my dissent ,

To underline my culpability it was pointed out ,
that the ” good reason ” that I’d have to give
in order to stay the Sanction was itself
not defined in Law,
my ” participation ” in their forced labour scheme
was also a term not defined in Law ;
Although i did not falter ,nor flinch,
nor hesitate ,nor seek compromise
or for my wounds to be salved ,

Thirteen weeks of penury ensued ,
imposed by implacable bureaucratic rules ;

they had achieved their goal,
planting the ball in the back of my net
after first getting the goalkeeper sent off.

None of that is defined in their Law either.
On August 13 2015 I completed a 13 Weeks Sanction imposed by the Department of Work & Pensions
for what they said was my failure to attend / participate in Mandatory Work Activity. M.W.A. is a state-run forced labour scheme onto which long term unemployed are conscripted. Once on it ,they are supposed to initially undertake 120 hours of unpaid work ( 30 hours per week for 4 weeks ). This I was reluctant to do. For full story and background you can visit #DansLaMerde on facebook. Similar State-run forced labour schemes are now the norm in capitalist countries as diverse as Germany and Australia amongst them.
Official estimates for the UK show that 1,000,000 so-called benefits sanctions are routinely issued each year.People are in effect left in the direst of need for the duration of their sanction period.


About Louis Kasatkin

Freelance Writer ,Journalist, Performance Poet and Poetry Promoter Resume / CV Senior Editor , 2014 - Member,Board of Senior Editors,”Episteme” -Online Journal of Bharat College,Mumbai Editorial Administrator ,2011 – to date At http://www.destinypoets.co.uk the internationally renowned poetry website in partnership with and centred at Destiny Christian Church, Wakefield, England Schools based Poetry Masterclasses, 2001- to date Louis has delivered his poetry masterclasses in interactive workshop format in primary and secondary schools throughout the City of Wakefield and further afield. His masterclasses have often been the pupils’ first and only opportunity for schools to work with a professional poet. Executive Producer,Wakefield Wireless Mysteries 2012 –to date Louis has the leadership role in this groundbreaking play-for-voices, a contemporary update of the world renowned Medieval Passion plays. He secured the support of Mary Creagh ,Member of Parliament for Wakefield as the project’s Patron. Performance Poetry Residencies 2010- to date with Destiny Christian Church 2001-2002 -Poet-in-Residence at Wakefield Cathedral 1999-2000 -Poet-in-Residence at Wakefield Trinity Wildcats Rugby League Football Club Poetry Group Leadership Roles 2010-to date Founder of Destiny Poets 2004-2010 -President, The Black Horse Poets of Wakefield. 2002-2007 -Founder and Convenor of The Cathedral Poets of Wakefield. Publications Poetry Anthologies ( Author ) 2004- A Very Special Collection with The Cathedral Poets 2002- Louis & friends-Wakefield Cathedral Poetry Anthology Poetry Magazines ( Editor ) 2010- to date “ The Elephant” –Destiny Poets’ published thrice annually 2004-2008 – “From The Horse’s Mouth” – The Black Horse Poets published twice yearly. 2005-2006 – “Poetry Wakefield,City & Dioceses”- The Cathedral Poets/ The Black Horse Poets A quarterly magazine for all schools within the City and Diocese of Wakefield. 2002- “ The Cathedral Poets “ – eponymously titled monthly poetry supplement to Cathedral News magazine. Freelance Journalism 1979 – 1994 Leeds Other Paper , co-operatively run alternative weekly news publication ,featuring local gig guide, investigative reporting ignored by the mainstream,etc.Louis was primarily the LOP’s Rugby league correspondent – “The Man in the Stand” – from 1983 to 1994 besides erstwhile cultural commentator and guerrilla investigative reporter starting in 1979. Academic Qualifications B.A.( Hons.) Organisation Studies 2.2 from Bradford College, 1981 – 1984 Poetry Awards & Recognition 2013 – Overseas Award for Excellence in Arts Conferred by AuthorsPress ,New Dehli 2008- Civic Reception held by Wakefield Metropolitan District Council, hosted by the Lord Mayor to honour the 10th Anniversary of the Black Horse Poets. 2007- Winner of “Wakefield Poet of the Year”-The prestigious Jane Harrison MemoriaL Award at the annual Wakefield Poetry Awards. 2003- Winner of the inaugural Leeds International Peace Festival Poetry Prize (Adult section) with “Hudson River Interlude”, a commemorative poem honouring the victims of 9/11.
This entry was posted in About Britain, About Wakefield, Contemporary Austerity Economics, Contemporary Society, Dystopia, Ennui, Existential, Expression of Faith, Franz Kafka, Horror, Louis Kasatkin, Politics, Social History, social satire and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Kafka’s The Sanction : A Personal Odyssey

  1. smitha says:

    A sad state .Acknowledge your fortitude sir.

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