Gentle warriors never scarred
(outside, that is.)
happy warriors training for battle
armored with smiles,
headed for battle the best intentions,
trained in nonviolent action.
Will there be an audience picnicking on the hillside
watching? Politely applauding?
We are good people, your neighbors,
uncle Charley and aunt Rose,
the man with the missing finger who runs
the hardware store, three singers
from the church choir without their robes,
the award winning high school teacher
with a stutter.
Where are the politicians, the bankers
the PAC men, the CEO swinging their boards
of directors? Are they lining up
on the other side? They haven’t got a chance
we outnumber them 99 to 1. They live behind
electronic gates and work somewhere in the clouds.
The stakes of this battle are everything.
We want it all: democracy, equality of opportunity,
money for education and a modern infrastructure,
healthcare for all, the freedom for unions to organize,
peace. Is that too much to want? To demand?
We march to meet the 1% but instead we will
be met by the thin blue line. They will push us,
cuff us, pepper spray our unguarded faces,
club us on the head, arrest us. They won’t let us
meet the other side face-to-face for a conversation.
Why do the cops fight us? Are their homes never
foreclosed? Do they never face medical bankruptcy?
Do they happily and completely cover their children’s
student loans? Do they only watch Fox News?
They are only following orders…
So let the struggle begin. From Saugatuck,
Harrisonville, Cape May, Morristown, Northeast Denver,
the University of Baltimore to Mount Pleasant Michigan,
from Ulster County and southside Chicago and Portland Maine,
Chico, Sacramento, Long Beach and Antelope Valley,
Houston Clear Lake, Uptown Kingston, from Santa Fe Springs
and Northside Chicago to the University of Central Florida
to East Harlem, Ottawa Illinois, and hundreds of other cities,
we are coming. Don’t underestimate us.