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Fists on Fire: Poetry from the Heart of the Revolution


by Jack Hirschman

Amid history's dust,
among vestigial bones of old ideologies,
one foot forward but seemingly no way forward or back
and originary thinking a dream beating its head
against a computer screen that's already
infomercialed it,

some see the Millennium as billions
of people in need, some as billions
of bux; some see the gap widening between
haves and have-nots, some see the Gap
globally expanding...its shops.

How to get a roof over everyone's head?
How to get 3 squares for all, ad infinitem?

There's more terror. More greed.
More wrap-around cars.
More thugs and scorpions
disguised in democracy.
More wars. More cops. More poor,
more poor, more
poor and homeless
masses in rags,
garbage-pickers, panhandlers, whores.
More mass-graves, slave-labor payoff promises,
arms unsleeving in Needle Alleys,
swarms of tourists passing by.

Death, you tear out our hearts and say:
See, they're only muscles,
and feed 'em to the sun of profits.

Death, we're up to here in your blood-works
and have had enough of the back-break
and shell-game that hustles us dry.

We're sick of this destiny of exploitation
and want another kind of society,
and can have, and will.

The bottom line moved in Seattle
almost 7 years since LA
on a wider stage:
40,000 workers with enviormentalists
internationally strong,
and the kick-ass of the New Class
screwing the tear-gas and the jails,
raising the spiral song
against the negation
that is capital,

and now we can and will
put more poor sparks to those aglow
on every wrong, together making
a millennial fire that will spread
our desire for a world co-operatively tuned
like an instrument all people will have
a hand in the making and playing of,

to get the whole body of soul back,
and the dignity nailed to the garbage pail,
and the faces ripped off and the feelings killed,
and be able at last to walk out of every moment's jail
into a world where a piece of bread
will profitlessly belong to all,
and where you'll come to a door no longer a stranger
and find the place is yours simply because you're human,
and free as well the schools and hospitals
for you to live your heart out
the way it was meant to beat.

People's Tribune
PO Box 3524, Chicago, IL 60654, 773-486-3551, info@peoplestribune.org.
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