Mayday, Mayday: A Populist Poem

As we reflect on the exhilarating week that was, a poem. 

May Day in San Francisco. Photo: AP

We work so hard for our daily bread
Perhaps a little to get ahead
Yet so many of us end up maimed or dead
Just doing what the bosses said.

Some work for water and salt, maybe a bowl of wheat
Others profit to exalt, their riches and conceit.
Slaying animals and trees and oceans for shares,
Instead of sharing the future with all of our heirs.

How could so many lives be foreclosed,
Banks vacuuming our dollars while we get hosed?
Families tossed like rags into the streets,
While immigrants and the poor get fleeced and policed.

Profit and pain are brothers bound in blood
Capitalism’s nature exploits muscle and mud.
On May Day, like all days, thousands of workers will die—
It is for them, and their children, that we Occupy.

Copyright Christopher D. Cook, San Francisco, April 30, 2012

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