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Protest Poems<br />Climate Advocacy Institute<br />Dikili, Turkey -- 2009<br />
Selected Poems<br />I hope that you’ll be moved by these examples (some in two languages), and that they’ll show you possi...
Revising Poems<br />REVISION:  Two ways of cooking:  clean as you go; clean up after.  Revision is not cleaning up after t...
I SIT AND LOOK OUTWalt Whitman                                               <br /> <br />I SIT and look out upon all the ...
Susan Griffin“I Like to Think of Harriet Tubman”http://www.birkenkrahe.com/blog/?p=52<br />I like to think of Harriet Tubm...
Chief Seattle (From Mary Pipher’sWriting to Change the World,p. 223)<br />This we know:<br />All things are connected<br /...
Jeremiah 19 - 26<br />19  My anguish, my anguish! I writhe in pain!Oh the walls of my heart!My heart is beating wildly;I c...
“I Am Waiting”  --  Lawrence FerlinghettiExcerpt – see whole poem at http://www.think-ink.net/visit/waiting.htm<br />I am ...
Pablo Neruda  --  “La United Fruit Co.” – “The United Fruit Co.”http://spanish.meetup.com/93/calendar/7207429/ -- for a mo...
EtelAdnan from &quot;October 27, 2003&quot;Translated from the French by C. Dicksonhttp://www.wordswithoutborders.org/?lab...
“Amman” --  “Water “   --  Khadija Al Mourabithttp://oregonstate.edu/dept/foreign_lang/totopos/Excerpts%20from%202005%20No...
ST. ROACHby Muriel Rukeyser from The Gates, McGraw-Hill, 1976http://www.bio.umass.edu/biology/kunkel/rukeyser.html<br />Fo...
Home To Roost -- by Kay Ryan http://www.poetryfoundation.org/archive/poem.html?id=31063<br />The chickens <br />are circli...
“Our Hold on the Planet” -- Robert FrostFrom Not PC: Our Hold on the Planet. 15 May 2009. &lt;http://pc.blogspot.com/2007/...
“Why Wait for Science?” -- Robert Frostfrom Poem Depot.  15 May 2009.&lt;http://web.mit.edu/lit/www/dutchiamb/poemdepot.ht...
Counting the Madby Donald Justice http://recently-banned-literature.blogspot.com/2008/06/donald-justice-counting-mad.html<...
In California during the Gulf WarDenise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br /> <b...
For the New Year, 1981Denise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br />I have a small...
BeginnersDenise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br /> <br />Dedicated to the mem...
“Talk in the Dark” -- Denise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br />We live in his...
“Elegies” – Sherman AlexieRead the whole poem at http://bibliosity.blogspot.com/2008/10/elegies.html<br />This is a poem f...
“In a Surrealist Year”Lawrence Ferlinghettihttp://www.alamemeetoile.net/Lawrence-Ferlinghetti.html<br /> <br />In a surrea...
The Unknown Citizen  by W. H. Auden(To JS/07 M 378This Marble Monument Is Erected by the State)http://www.poets.org/viewme...
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Protest Poems #1

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Protest Poems #1

  1. 1. Protest Poems<br />Climate Advocacy Institute<br />Dikili, Turkey -- 2009<br />
  2. 2. Selected Poems<br />I hope that you’ll be moved by these examples (some in two languages), and that they’ll show you possibilities and lead you to new ones of your own. You’re getting exercises from Kent and me to get you started. <br />But first “a word” about revision, influenced by the former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins:<br />
  3. 3. Revising Poems<br />REVISION: Two ways of cooking: clean as you go; clean up after. Revision is not cleaning up after the party. REVISION IS THE PARTY. Revise for cadence, musicality. Find connections between wildly different things. Work on the first line – which sets up the poem, “game on” or key signature, make obligations for what follows. Try different stanzaic forms.<br />Trust your associations; let the poem move illogically. A poem doesn’t stay on course so much as respond like a sailboat: the poem creates the course. End up on places you didn’t expect to be.<br /> THE POEM SHOULD NOT BE A RECORD OF SOMETHING THAT HAPPENED; IT SHOULD BE AN EVENT TAKING PLACE. <br />
  4. 4. I SIT AND LOOK OUTWalt Whitman <br /> <br />I SIT and look out upon all the sorrows of the world, and upon all oppression and shame;<br /> <br />I hear secret convulsive sobs from young men, at anguish with themselves, remorseful after deeds done;<br /> <br />I see, in low life, the mother misused by her children, dying, neglected, gaunt, desperate;<br /> <br />I see the wife misused by her husband—I see the treacherous seducer of young women;<br /> <br />I mark the ranklings of jealousy and unrequited love, attempted to be hid—I see these sights on the earth;<br />         <br />I see the workings of battle, pestilence, tyranny—I see martyrs and prisoners;<br /> <br />I observe a famine at sea—I observe the sailors casting lots who shall be kill’d, to preserve the lives of the rest;<br /> <br />I observe the slights and degradations cast by arrogant persons upon laborers, the poor, and upon negroes, and the like;<br /> <br />All these—All the meanness and agony without end, I sitting, look out upon,<br /> <br />See, hear, and am silent.<br />
  5. 5. Susan Griffin“I Like to Think of Harriet Tubman”http://www.birkenkrahe.com/blog/?p=52<br />I like to think of Harriet Tubman. Harriet Tubman who carried a revolver,who had a scar on her head from a rock thrownby a slave-master (because shetalked back) , and whohad a ransom on her headof thousands of dollars and whowas never caught, and whohad no use for the lawwhen the law was wrong,who defied the law. I liketo think of her.I like to think of her especiallywhen I think of the problemof feeding children.<br />The legal answerto the problem of feeding childrenis ten free lunches every month,being equal, in the child&apos;s real life,to eating lunch every other day.Monday but not Tuesday.I like to think of the Presidenteating lunch on Monday, but notTuesday.and when I think of the Presidentand the law, and the problem offeeding children, I like to think of Harriet Tubmanand her revolver.<br />And then sometimesI think of the Presidentand other men,men who practice the law,who revere the law,who make the law,who enforce the lawwho live behindand operate throughand feed themselvesat the expense ofstarving childrenbecause of the law.<br />men who sit in paneled officesand think about vacationsand tell womenwhose care it isto feed childrennot to be hystericalnot to be hysterical as in the wordhysterikos, the greek forwomb suffering,not to suffer in theirwombs,not to care,not to bother the menbecause they want to thinkof other thingsand do not want to take women seriously.I want them to think about Harriet Tubman,and remember,remember she was beaten by a white manand she livedand she lived to redress her grievances,and she lived in swampsand wore the clothes of a manbringing hundreds of fugitives fromslavery, and was never caught,and led an army,and won a battle,and defied the lawsbecause the laws were wrong, I want mento take us seriously.I am tired wanting them to thinkabout right and wrong.I want them to fear.I want them to feel fear nowI want themto knowthat there is always a timethere is always a time to make rightwhat is wrong, there is always a timefor retributionand that timeis beginning.<br />
  6. 6. Chief Seattle (From Mary Pipher’sWriting to Change the World,p. 223)<br />This we know:<br />All things are connected<br />Like the blood <br />Which unites one family.<br />Whatever befalls the earth<br />Befalls the sons and daughters of the earth.<br />Man did not weave the web of life:<br />He is merely a strand in it.<br />Whatever he does to the we,<br />He does to himself.<br />
  7. 7. Jeremiah 19 - 26<br />19 My anguish, my anguish! I writhe in pain!Oh the walls of my heart!My heart is beating wildly;I cannot keep silent,for I hear the sound of the trumpet,the alarm of war.20 Crash follows hard on crash;the whole land is laid waste.Suddenly my tents are laid waste,my curtains in a moment.21 How long must I see the standardand hear the sound of the trumpet?<br />22 “For my people are foolish;they know me not;they are stupid children;they have no understanding.They are ‘wise’—in doing evil!But how to do good they know not.”<br /> 23 I looked on the earth, and behold, it was without form and void;and to the heavens, and they had no light.24 I looked on the mountains, and behold, they were quaking,and all the hills moved to and fro.25 I looked, and behold, there was no man,and all the birds of the air had fled.26 I looked, and behold, the fruitful land was a desert,and all its cities were laid in ruinsbefore the LORD, before his fierce anger.<br />
  8. 8. “I Am Waiting” -- Lawrence FerlinghettiExcerpt – see whole poem at http://www.think-ink.net/visit/waiting.htm<br />I am waiting for my case to come up<br />and I am waiting<br />for a rebirth of wonder<br />and I am waiting for someone<br />to really discover America<br />and wail<br />and I am waiting<br />for the discovery<br />Of a new symbolic western frontier<br />and I am waiting<br />for the American Eagle<br />to really spread its wings<br />and straighten up and fly right<br />and I am waiting for the Age of Anxiety<br />to drop dead<br />and I am waiting<br />for the war to be fought<br />which will make the world safe <br />for anarchy<br />and I am waiting for the final withering away<br />of all governments<br />and I am perpetually awaiting<br />a rebirth of wonder<br /> <br />I am waiting for the second coming<br />And I am waiting<br />For a religious revival<br />To sweep thru the state of Arizona<br />And I am waiting<br />For the grapes of wrath to stored<br />And I am waiting<br />For them to prove<br />That God is really American<br />And I am waiting<br />To see God on television<br />Piped into church altars<br />If they can find<br />The right channel<br />To tune it in on<br />And I am waiting <br />for the last supper to be served again<br />and a strange new appetizer<br />and I am perpetually awaiting<br />a rebirth of wonder<br /> <br />
  9. 9. Pablo Neruda -- “La United Fruit Co.” – “The United Fruit Co.”http://spanish.meetup.com/93/calendar/7207429/ -- for a more legible version<br /> <br />Cuandosonó la trompeta, estuvotodopreparado en la tierray Jehovárepartió el mundoa Coca-Cola Inc., Anaconda, Ford Motors, y otrasentidades: la CompañíaFrutera Inc. se reservó lo másjugoso, la costa central de mi tierra, la dulcecintura de América. Bautizó de nuevosustierrascomo &quot;&apos;Repúblicas Bananas&quot;, y sobre los muertosdormidos, sobre los héroesinquietosqueconquistaron la grandeza, la libertad y lasbanderas, estableció la óperabufa: enajenó los albedríos, regaló coronas de César, desenvainó la envidia, atrajola dictadura de lasmoscas, moscas Trujillo, moscasTachos, moscasCarias, moscasMartínez, moscasUbico, moscashúmedasde sangrehumilde y mermelada, moscasborrachasquezumbansobrelastumbaspopulares, moscas de circo, sabiasmoscasentendidas en tiranía. Entre lasmoscassanguinariasla Fruteradesembarca, arrasando el café y lasfrutasen susbarcosquedeslizaroncomobandejas el tesorode nuestrastierrassumergidas. Mientrastanto, por los abismosazucarados de los puertos, caíanindiossepultadosen el vapor de la mañana: un cuerporueda, unacosasin nombre, un númerocaídoun racimo de frutamuertaderramada en el pudridero.  <br /> <br />When the trumpet sounded, everything on earth was prepared and Jehovah distributed the world to Coca Cola Inc., Anaconda, Ford Motors and other entities: The Fruit Company Inc. reserved the juiciest for itself, the central coast of my land, the sweet waist of America. It re-baptized the lands &quot;Banana Republics&quot; and on the sleeping dead, on the restless heroes who&apos;d conquered greatness, liberty and flags, it founded a comic opera: it alienated free wills, gave crowns of Caesar as gifts, unsheathed jealousy, attracted the dictatorship of the flies, Trujillo flies, Tachos flies, Carias flies, Martinez flies, Ubico flies, flies soppy with humble blood and marmelade, drunken flies that buzz around common graves, circus flies, learned flies adept at tyranny. The Company disembarks among the blood-thirsty flies, brim-filling their boats that slide with the coffee and fruit treasure of our submerged lands like trays. Meanwhile, along the sugared up abysms of the ports, indians fall over, buried in the morning mist: a body rolls, a thing without a name, a fallen number, a bunch of dead fruit spills into the pile of rot.<br />Translated and © Jack Hirschman 2004, from City Lights&apos; The Essential Neruda<br />
  10. 10. EtelAdnan from &quot;October 27, 2003&quot;Translated from the French by C. Dicksonhttp://www.wordswithoutborders.org/?lab=AdnanOctober<br />come, come! a jasmine sprig behind the earis from some declining twilightthey would rather speak no moreof human matters. but then stonesare not much better.<br /> words, for effect, cloak themselves inTyrien purple, and it is inthe spaces that are betweenwhere the real adventure lies<br /> I close the shutters and wonderwhere the light has gone that was fondlingthe sea as we looked on<br /> it&apos;s nice being here in discontinuity, thedwelling place of birds, and being aware thatthe world&apos;s nations feed on plunder: armed withthis disillusion; we can bring ourselves tobear the unbearable<br /> don&apos;t abandon your childhood, and itssorrows, your first desire will follow youtill your very last breath. roads can lead toinspiration but never to peaceof heart.<br /> Paris, October 27, 2003<br />
  11. 11. “Amman” -- “Water “ -- Khadija Al Mourabithttp://oregonstate.edu/dept/foreign_lang/totopos/Excerpts%20from%202005%20North%20African%20Voices.html<br /> Aw yayid a yemma, aw yayid a yemmaammanziighzar n rafrahethIjj n ussekifittswedarrndemmethN uraweniyiwthengharunnaggar n rebharI hemrentheggijjenighzarTheggijjenumcaniuzghenThegg car azzeggwagh, yezwughssithammenDienighemyanjjwarath s izurankerâanTaffnnsentnnwarrebda I belâanTfuct n amcan a war thiwggijj caRebdaqathdinn, mmbrathiritsharakmanayaThiritrakwarziixfennesRebdatawkar s tiwggthitaffennes<br /> Bring me mother, bring me mother water from the spring of joyone sip helps to forget the remorseof hearts that have been at the end of the seathat have flown into one riverin a reddish place in red earth, coloured by bloodThere trees have grown with broken roots next to them, flowers always closedIn this place the sun isn’t very farIt’s always there, without the shade it burns everythingthe shade runs from itselfalways running with fear next to ittranslated from the Berber by the author<br />
  12. 12. ST. ROACHby Muriel Rukeyser from The Gates, McGraw-Hill, 1976http://www.bio.umass.edu/biology/kunkel/rukeyser.html<br />For that I never knew you, I only learned to dread you, for that I never touched you, they told me you are filth, they showed me by every action to despise your kind; for that I saw my people making war on you, I could not tell you apart, one from another, for that in childhood I lived in places clear of you, for that all the people I knew met you by crushing you, stamping you to death, they poured boiling    water on you, they flushed you down, for that I could not tell one from another only that you were dark, fast on your feet, and slender.    Not like me. <br />For that I did not know your poems And that I do not know any of your sayings And that I cannot speak or read your language And that I do not sing your songs And that I do not teach our children           to eat your food           or know your poems           or sing your songs But that we say you are filthing our food But that we know you not at all.<br /> Yesterday I looked at one of you for the first time. You were lighter than the others in color, that was      neither good nor bad. <br /> I was really looking for the first time. You seemed troubled and witty.<br /> Today I touched one of you for the first time. You were startled, you ran, you fled away Fast as a dancer, light, strange and lovely to the touch. I reach, I touch, I begin to know you. <br /> <br />
  13. 13. Home To Roost -- by Kay Ryan http://www.poetryfoundation.org/archive/poem.html?id=31063<br />The chickens <br />are circling and <br />blotting out the <br />day. The sun is <br />bright, but the <br />chickens are in <br />the way. Yes, <br />the sky is dark <br />with chickens, <br />dense with them. <br />They turn and <br />then they turn <br />again. These <br />are the chickens <br />you let loose <br />one at a time <br />and small— <br />various breeds. <br />Now they have <br />come home <br />to roost—all <br />the same kind <br />at the same speed.<br />Kay Ryan, &quot;Home to Roost&quot; from The Niagara River. Copyright © 2005 by Kay Ryan. Reprinted with the permission of Grove/Atlantic, Inc. All rights reserved. Caution: Users are warned that this work is protected under copyright laws and downloading is strictly prohibited. The right to reproduce or transfer the work via any medium must be secured with Grove/Atlantic, Inc.Source: Poetry (May 2003). <br />
  14. 14. “Our Hold on the Planet” -- Robert FrostFrom Not PC: Our Hold on the Planet. 15 May 2009. &lt;http://pc.blogspot.com/2007/07/our-hold-on-planet-robert-frost.html&gt;. <br /> <br /> <br />We asked for rain. It didn’t flash and roar.<br />It didn’t lose its temper at our demand<br />And blow a gale. It didn’t misunderstand<br />And give us more than our spokesman bargained for;<br />And just because we owned to a wish for rain,<br />Send us a flood and bid us be damned and drown.<br />It gently threw us a glittering shower down.<br />And when we had taken that into the roots of grain,<br />It threw us another and then another still,<br />Till the spongy soil again was natal wet.<br />We may doubt the just proportion of good to ill.<br />There is much in nature against us. But we forget;<br />Take nature altogether since time began,<br />Including human nature, in peace and war,<br />And it must be a little more in favor of man,<br />Say a fraction of one percent at the very least,<br />Or our number living wouldn’t be steadily more,<br />Our hold on the planet wouldn’t have so increased.<br /> <br />
  15. 15. “Why Wait for Science?” -- Robert Frostfrom Poem Depot. 15 May 2009.&lt;http://web.mit.edu/lit/www/dutchiamb/poemdepot.html&gt;. <br /> <br /> <br />Sarcastic Science, she would like to know,<br />In her complacent ministry of fear,<br />How we propose to get away from here<br />When she has made things so we have to go<br />Or be wiped out. Will she be asked to show<br />Us how by rocket we may hope to steer<br />To some star off there, say, a half light-year<br />Through temperature of absolute zero?<br />Why wait for Science to supply the how<br />When any amateur can tell it now?<br />The way to go away should be the same<br />As fifty million years ago we came—<br />If anyone remembers how that was<br />I have a theory, but it hardly does.<br /> <br />
  16. 16. Counting the Madby Donald Justice http://recently-banned-literature.blogspot.com/2008/06/donald-justice-counting-mad.html<br />This one was put in a jacket, <br />This one was sent home, <br />This one was given bread and meat <br />But would eat none, <br />And this one cried No NoNoNo<br />All day long. <br /> <br />This one looked at the window <br />As though it were a wall, <br />This one saw things that were not there, <br />This one things that were, <br />And this one cried No NoNoNo<br />All day long. <br /> <br />This one thought himself a bird, <br />This one a dog, <br />And this one thought himself a man, <br />An ordinary man, <br />And cried and cried No NoNoNo<br />All day long.<br />
  17. 17. In California during the Gulf WarDenise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br /> <br />Among the blight-killed eucalypts, among<br />trees and bushes rusted by Christmas frosts,<br />the yards and hillsides exhausted by five years of drought,<br /> <br />certain airy white blossoms punctually<br />reappeared, and dense clusters of pale pink, dark pink--<br />a delicate abundance. They seemed<br /> <br />like guests arriving joyfully on the accustomed<br />festival day, unaware of the year&apos;s events, not perceiving<br />the sackcloth others were wearing.<br /> <br />To some of us, the dejected landscape consorted well<br />with our shame and bitterness. Skies ever-blue,<br />daily sunshine, disgusted us like smile-buttons.<br /> <br />Yet the blossoms, clinging to thin branches<br />more lightly than birds alert for flight,<br />lifted the sunken heart<br /> <br /> <br />even against its will.<br /> But not<br />as symbols of hope: they were flimsy<br />as our resistance to the crimes committed<br /> <br />--again, again--in our name; and yes, they return,<br />year after year, and yes, they briefly shone with serene joy<br />over against the dark glare<br /> <br />of evil days. They are, and their presence<br />is quietness ineffable--and the bombings are, were,<br />no doubt will be; that quiet, that huge cacophany<br /> <br />simultaneous. No promise was being accorded, the blossoms<br />were not doves, there was no rainbow. And when it was claimed<br />the war had ended, it had not ended.<br />
  18. 18. For the New Year, 1981Denise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br />I have a small grain of hope–one small crystal that gleamsclear colors out of transparency.I need more.I break off a fragmentto send you.Please takethis grain of a grain of hopeso that mine won&apos;t shrink.Please share your fragmentso that yours will grow.Only so, by division,will hope increase,like a clump of irises, which will cease to flowerunless you distributethe clustered roots, unlikely source–clumsy and earth-covered–of grace.<br />
  19. 19. BeginnersDenise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br /> <br />Dedicated to the memory of Karen Silkwood and Eliot Gralla“From too much love of living,Hope and desire set free,Even the weariest riverWinds somewhere to the sea—“But we have only begunTo love the earth.We have only begunTo imagine the fullness of life.How could we tire of hope?—so much is in bud.How can desire fail?—we have only begunto imagine justice and mercy,only begun to envisionhow it might beto live as siblings with beast and flower,not as oppressors.<br /> <br /> Surely our rivercannot already be hasteninginto the sea of nonbeing?Surely it cannotdrag, in the silt,all that is innocent?Not yet, not yet—there is too much brokenthat must be mended,too much hurt we have done to each otherthat cannot yet be forgiven.We have only begun to knowthe power that is in us if we would joinour solitudes in the communion of struggle.So much is unfolding that mustcomplete its gesture,so much is in bud.<br />
  20. 20. “Talk in the Dark” -- Denise Levertovhttp://www.chriscorrigan.com/parkinglot/levertov.htm#_Toc23572751<br />We live in history, says one.We&apos;re flies on the hide of Leviathan, says another.Either way, says one,fears and losses.And among losses, says another,the special places our own roads were to lead to.Our deaths, says one.That&apos;s right, says another,Now it&apos;s to be a mass death.Mass graves, says one, are nothing new.No, says another, but this time there&apos;ll be no graves,all the dead will lie where they fall.Except, says one, those that burn to ash.And are blown in the fiery wind, says another.How can we live in this fear? Says one.From day to day, says another.I still want to see, says one,where my own road&apos;s going.I want to live, says another, but where can I liveif the world is gone?<br />
  21. 21. “Elegies” – Sherman AlexieRead the whole poem at http://bibliosity.blogspot.com/2008/10/elegies.html<br />This is a poem for people who died in stupid ways.This is a poem for Napoleon&apos;s great grandson whosnapped his neck when his ridiculously long scarf caughtin the rear wheels of the convertible he was driving.This is a poem for General George Armstrong Custer.This is a poem for all the Japanese gourmets who eat one of thosepoisonous blowfish, which are considered a great delicacy, butare lethal in even the smallest portions unless preparedexpertly by a chef who has trained for years. A blowfish steakwill make your lips numb, blur your vision, and ring your ears,when it is prepared correctly. A poorly prepared blowfishwill stop your heart just like that. The dead, with theirstuffed, stopped hearts, are buried with expressions ofdeep satisfaction.This is a poem for all those who died with expressions ofdeep satisfaction.This is a poem for the skydivers who pulled the cord and heard thedeafening silence of a chute that would not open, then feltthe roar of the secondary chute as it fluttered uselesslyabove them.This is a poem for all the teenagers who wrote songs about teenswho failed to beat the train at the crossing and failed.This is a poem for all the folksingers who wrote songs about teenswho failed to beat the train at the crossing.<br />This is a poem for the Brink&apos;s armored-car guard who was crushedto death by $50,000 worth fo quarters. He was guarding a loadof twenty-five-pound coin boxes in the back of the truckwhen the driver braked suddenly to avoid a car that had swervedin front of him. When the driver pulled over to check on hispartner, he found him completely covered by coins.This is a poem for all the hunger strikers of the world. When they………………………..<br />This is a poem for my father, who has a sore on his foot that willnever heal. He salts his food with vengeance, like he was takingrevenge on everybody who had ever done him wrong.This is a poem for my tribe, who continue to live in the shadow fothe abandoned uranium mine on our reservation, where thenight sky glows in a way that would have invoked songs andstories a few generations earlier, but now simply allows usto see better as we drive down the highway toward a differentkind of moon.<br />
  22. 22. “In a Surrealist Year”Lawrence Ferlinghettihttp://www.alamemeetoile.net/Lawrence-Ferlinghetti.html<br /> <br />In a surrealist year<br /> of sandwichmen and sunbathers<br /> dead sunflowers and live telephones<br /> house-broken politicos with party whips<br /> performed as usual<br /> in the ring of their sawdust circuses<br /> where tumblers and human cannonballs<br /> filled the air like cries<br /> when some cool clown<br /> pressed an inedible mushroom button<br /> and an inaudible Sunday bomb<br /> fell down<br />catching the president at his prayers<br /> on the 19th green<br /> <br /> <br />O it was a spring<br /> of fur leaves and cobalt flowers<br /> when cadillacs fell thru the trees like rain<br /> drowning the meadows with madness<br />while out of every imitation cloud<br /> dropped myriad wingless crowds<br /> of nutlessnagasaki survivors<br /> And lost teacups<br /> full of our ashes<br /> floated by<br />
  23. 23. The Unknown Citizen  by W. H. Auden(To JS/07 M 378This Marble Monument Is Erected by the State)http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15549<br />He was found by the Bureau of Statistics to be<br />One against whom there was no official complaint,<br />And all the reports on his conduct agree<br />That, in the modern sense of an old-fashioned word, he was a<br /> saint,<br />For in everything he did he served the Greater Community.<br />Except for the War till the day he retired<br />He worked in a factory and never got fired,<br />But satisfied his employers, Fudge Motors Inc.<br />Yet he wasn&apos;t a scab or odd in his views,<br />For his Union reports that he paid his dues,<br />(Our report on his Union shows it was sound)<br />And our Social Psychology workers found<br />That he was popular with his mates and liked a drink.<br />The Press are convinced that he bought a paper every day<br />And that his reactions to advertisements were normal in every way.<br />Policies taken out in his name prove that he was fully insured,<br />And his Health-card shows he was once in hospital but left it cured.<br />Both Producers Research and High-Grade Living declare<br />He was fully sensible to the advantages of the Instalment Plan<br />And had everything necessary to the Modern Man,<br />A phonograph, a radio, a car and a frigidaire.<br />Our researchers into Public Opinion are content <br />That he held the proper opinions for the time of year;<br />When there was peace, he was for peace: when there was war, he went.<br />He was married and added five children to the population,<br />Which our Eugenist says was the right number for a parent of his<br /> generation.<br />And our teachers report that he never interfered with their<br /> education.<br />Was he free? Was he happy? The question is absurd:<br />Had anything been wrong, we should certainly have heard.<br /> <br />

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