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flammes de l'enfer

By       Message Vi Ransel       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     Permalink

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flammes de l'enfer

Once upon a time
there were Old People
who remembered
in times of feast
that there would again
be famine.
Now we stand
collectively
on the precipice
of quickening global drought
as well as financial disaster.
In a modern world,
with the internet
and the Wisdom of Ages
at our fingertips,
how
have we allowed this
situation to happen?

The world's economies
for at least the last
two hundred years
have been cycling,
alternating
between boom and bust.
But thirty years ago
conservatives rose to power
with the assertion
that they would stop this
and said "Trust us."

And now many of the Old People
who had been through
the Big One in the 30s
are warehoused
in nursing facilities,
the rest bought off
or shut up by the New Deal
or the affluence
of a bubbling economy.

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The wisdom previously stored
in our grandparents,
which had been written
down in history books
to replace them
was itself replaced,
as history was rewritten
leaving out the factors
that caused the economic cycles
in the first place.

Our repository of wisdom,
and the means to restock it,
were replaced with
a profitable package of lies.
Not only history,
but "news" was rewritten,
to serve the marketplace's
unrelenting drive,
resulting in a misinformed electorate
with a shocking lack of facts
about how to survive.

This editing spread
from our wisdom to the culture,
which was increasingly engineered
to fit the needs of the market,
which penetrated
every sphere of our existence
in the cattle drive
stampeding us to profit.

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An artificial feast
of easy credit was created
to move the bulk of the banquet
to the head of the table,
resulting in its collapse
under the weight of the fraud
which made the world's economy
increasingly unstable.

And to make the looming storm
more perfect,
the purchased omission of fact
caused us to ignore
global warming,
this inadequate term created
so the phenomenon
could be denigrated
as the climate tsunami
was steadily forming.

Just as the pattern of economics
thrusts society from riches to rags
in alternating, repetitive financial cycles, 
climate change roils weather patterns,
breaking all existing records,
until it's apparent
we're in the process of committing eocide.

The snows that cover
the world's mountain ranges
are down to fifty percent,
eradicating the rivers
that carried the water
that ensured the harvests
from the world's bread baskets.

Water wars
and the prohibition
of grain export
have, in fact, already begun,
yet Main Stream "News"
refuses to acknowledge,
let alone address,
this burning, interminable question.

History, intelligence
and the actual facts
have been stolen
through revision,
dumbing down
and the purchase of "news",
but like Marley's ghost,
Americans are tethered
to the shredding chains
of their American Dream
and so, much like Scrooge

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they refuse to give them up,
in love with the whole
neo-liberal mise en scene,
a Stockholm Syndrome pandemic,
whereby the perpetrator
is embraced by the traumatized victim.

As a result
we are rapidly hurtling
toward the intersection
of abject poverty and global famine.
In the aftermath, perhaps,
we can listen to the Old People
if we get the chance
to start it all over again.
From scratch.

END NOTES:

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Vi's works appear widely both in print and online. She conducts Poetry Workshops and gives readings in Central New York. Her latest chapbook is "Sine Qua Non Antiques (an Arcanum of History, Geography and Treachery).

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