A Woman Needs A Coat


A woman needs a coat

And a hat

And a roof

A woman needs a friend

And an enemy


And a lover that makes her blood run hot

And one to lay with peacefully


A woman needs air in the morning

And fire at night

A woman needs speed

And to dance in slow circles

With lipstick smeared across the back of her hand

And her hair undone

Or cropped short

Or pinned back

Or tight


A woman needs words like feathers

She needs sentences like knives

She needs to track the long guttural laugh

And utter the quick, sharp, gasp

A woman needs….




But maybe not all women,


Just I.



Black Eyed Sue


Black-eyed Sue

On her 4th Gin strut,


She went through life

with eyes half-shut.

Who knew that

Bacchus’ companion

was a panther?

Or that love

could be sucked

from pavement cracks

holding out for her to fall?


There was me and you and

Black-eyed Sue

You shot her a look

of such desire

That for a moment your

Eyes were handcuffed

to her arse.


But Black-eyed Sue

Whose eyes are blue

Remained oblivious.


There are times for words

and time for dancing

I wish we hadn’t all just

burst out laughing

and headed back up

that hip but unforgiving

Crouch End street.


As if the night was






Dark Magic


Weep for England

in this unsympathetic heat

Where cladded souls

cover buildings

in murderous sheets


A tower

That ignites

Like tissue on fire

Choking innocents

on cyanide fumes

as flames lick higher.


Ah, the crowd roars

what a trick!

First they hid that ugly building

And now

They have it rid!

Look at those magicians!

How elegantly done!

There were 300 residents, or more,

And now there are none.

They’ll not shed a tear, I bet

for the bodies they’ve let burn;

They’re huddled over their balance sheets

with their pens and their quills.


And it’s ever been thus

that the powerful

cook the books,

change the laws

and shelter crooks


Till all of England

and its monuments of stone

Rise up like conceited follies,

in marble, glass, steel, copper or bone


It’s all been built on the backs

of exploited labour

while masters and mistresses

dine on luxury and favour.


Marx explained it very well.

They pay you just enough to make sure you exist:

to eat, to shit, to work till you’re ill.


They’ve refined this system

With such precision

that you think

your debts, your freedoms;

that your needs

are your wants;

that your indoctrination

is an education

That you’re lucky to

be free

to accept a zero hrs contract

for life lived



Aaah, let’s put our hands together

For this dark magician’s trick;

You put in the labour

they extract the wealth!


That building,


It’s a ten-million- pound funeral pyre!

The charcoal remains

The ash,

The fire


The rich hate the poor

And it’s ill-disguised

As we march towards barbarism

With blinders on our eyes


We’ve been sold into debt slavery

But think that we are free

Wedded to horror,

Yet act if we are players in some

Romantic comedy.


But the jokes

On us

And it has always been

When we think we are players

When we are just cogs

In a machine.


Are we content to be

Mere spectators

At this grim wedding?

Where money is the bride

And sorrow is the bedding

And the groom is greed

And the vows are the law

And the revellers feed themselves

On the flesh of the poor

And they feast and they feast, insatiable,

Always calling for



How many bodies

Do the rich have to break

Before their appetites are sated

Till their bellies begin to ache?


How many piles

How many tears

How many broken minds

How many fears

That keep us awake

And leave us with nothing

Till all we have left

Are our hopes

And our chanting?

“Oh-oh, Jeremy Corbyn!”


How many times

Do we turn away

From those in power

Who will not listen

To what we have to say?


How much less do we have to have

Till we wake up and recognise

That 14% own most of wealth

And the riches

they have

Is because

We allow them the power,

And they use us

For entertainment,

Feeding us less than crumbs,

As our lives

They devour.


This grisly wedding has no end,

We are the feast,

Our flesh

Their gain.


From these sad truths

Our anger, our outrage,

Let’s us salvage our dreams

Demand social justice


Allow our hopes

to rise like a Phoenix

Let’s not be content

With faith and good intentions


For it’s a necromancer’s trick,

That sacrifices

the bodies of the poor

For the vanities

Of the rich.




profile pic small
Debra Watson
bibi synthe small
Debra as Bibi Synthe
Debra Watson is a participative theatre, art and media director, performer and facilitator and site-specific artist.

Her 1-2-1 pop up Poetry Installation ‘TIME=MONEY” won a Brighton Fringe/Arts Council WINDOW award for most promising new company.

She  has a one woman, audience collaborative show about dating called “Gimme, Gimme, Gimme More: LOVE!” and performs regularly at

The Poetry Brothel London as ‘Bibi Synthe’.

‘A woman needs a coat’ and ‘Black-eyed Sue’ are published in her self-produced chapbook called ‘Be Loved’ (enquiries via her webpage)
Dark Arts was first performed at ‘Bloody Poets’ and has subsequently become a favourite performance piece.


Debra has also performed with The Dark Arts Circus and at Heaven is Burning, Extra Second, Platform 1 @The Poetry Cafe and Poetry in the Woods.