People’s History (an ode to Tom Joad)

The people I know

are in it to win

the people i know

have read Howard Zinn

the people I know

have sights set on victory

the people i know

know our people’s history

my people are people

that fight the oppressor

they won’t back down

to a violent aggressor

my people are people

that take to the street

and keep fighting through winter

and dog-day summer heat

my people are peaceful

but we’re warriors too

and we’ll never give up

on the red, white, and blue

collar boys and girls

and men and women,

though most are living

paycheck to paycheck

because it was a stacked deck of cards

sure, we can blame it on the guards

but they’re stuck in prison with us

they’ve been brainwashed

and they know not what they do

forgive them…

and if you pray for our people

pray for them too

Muslim, Christian, or Jew

it matters not who pulled the trigger

they don’t call the shots

it’s bigger than them

and bigger than us

it’s the STRUCTURE,





But we have to stay focused

keep our eyes on the prize

it’s easy to just say

“live free, or die”

but to live for truth and justice

no matter the cost…

and to use religious terminology,

this is our “cross”

and so, we must bear it

though it’s heavy as hell,

fuck the weight

we can share it

and wear our heart

on our sleeve…

and, if what you’re doing

in life

doesn’t nourish your soul

let it go,

about face and leave

only your footprints

without a hint of regret

don’t let the system beat you,

but if you find yourself down

fear not,

for I am always around…

“Wherever there’s a fight,

so hungry people can eat,

I’ll be there.

Wherever there’s a cop

beatin’ up a guy,

I’ll be there.

I’ll be in the way

guys yell when they’re mad.

I’ll be in the way

kids laugh when they’re hungry

and they know supper’s ready –

I’ll be there, too.”

Kinda like the Ghost

of old Tom Joad…

i think we all

have a part

of the great big soul

that we all share

and i care

i do

and if i was a betting man

I’d bet that deep down

whether you know it or not,

you care too…

About soitgoes1984

I was born and raised on land stolen from the Pocumtuc. I now live on a small island in the middle of the Pacific ocean, on land that was stolen more recently, from the Hawaiians. I am addict, struggling to kick the habit of fossil fuel. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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