Friday, December 29, 2017

This is how history works (Day 345)



This is how history works.
Disgusting, irresponsible 
requests that start to sound 
strange to your ear, 
after the fourth
or fourteenth 
or forty-thousandth time
you hear them repeated.
Men and women, reading
aloud from storybooks,
not reading what needs
to be read, deciding 
things best left undecided 
by anyone but God 
(or whatever you prefer 
to call the great Mystery),
such as, “When does life start?”
or “What is the meaning of art?”
There are no set boundaries,
no term limits on genius,
where literature,
or music, or architecture 
are concerned.
Imagine, then, the absurdity
of government, among a people
unwilling to lift up 
their voices to demand justice 
for their neighbors, 
their friends, 
their fellow citizens.
Look: They cannot figure out
how to feel about a painting 
of a Campbell’s Soup can,
or Crayola’s new crayon colors, 
or whether Disco should have died.
That is how history works:
It is a beautiful and flawed
choose-your-own-adventure 
tale, and we must find a way 
to decide.



(c) 2017, by Hannah Six

Image: Campbell’s Soup Cans (1962), by Andy Warhol
via Wikimedia Commons