Poem: Willie McGuire

The sight of young men from southeast Ukraine preparing themselves for war, to defend their birth-right, as seen on TV, brings to mind a young Scotsman who spoke his last words to Harry Pollitt as he lay in a hospital bed in Spain in the 1930s.

Proletarian writers

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Willie McGuire, Willie McGuire

What was it set your heart on fire?

From distant Dundee home to go

Where Jarama and Ebro flow

Brave through the Spanish gates of hell

Cry out: “Long live the YCL!”

You died to give this world a chance

To crush the grisly fascist stance

Of those who make a world of want

You fought to end the age of cant

With gun in hand while comrades fell

Cried out: “Long live the YCL!”

So many things have changed today

The world moved in a different way

Aided by the faint and weary

Who failed to delve Marxist theory

And almost cast a sad death knell

On your: “Long live the YCL!”

Willie McGuire, Willie McGuire

Your fight in Spain will ere inspire

Young people from around the globe

Who proudly don the red, red robe

Stained by the blood of heroes who fell

Now: “Long live a New YCL!”

By William Hunt-Vincent