Occupy: Lessons, Fall 2011
by Ric Vrana
Look around you and see
private homes and cars
public streets and buildings
Debt abstractions, bought and sold
beyond our control.
When the banks own our homes
we dwell at their pleasure as surfs.
When the banks own our pensions
our future is being their dependents.
When the banks own our communications media
all speech is corporate speech.
When the banks own our schools
what they believe is considered knowledge.
When the banks own our farmers
we are the foie gras of capital.
When the banks own the armaments
the guns are pointed at the organizers.
When the banks own medical care
our sickness makes them rich.
When the banks own the politicians
we cannot vote our conscience.
When the banks own the day
sunlight belongs to the wealthy.
When the banks own the night
we tremble in bed with the terror of mice.
When corporations are started
they are charted to achieve some social purpose.
When they don’t function to achieve that social purpose
they must be disbanded.
When they are disbanded
their accumulated wealth is to be seized and redistributed.
An occupying army is despicable.
We resist and work to subvert;
we are always, the insurrection.
A people’s occupation is democracy.
We seize and hold the commonwealth;
we are the moment of decision.
We shake the spell and rise.
Challenge the absolute right of capital.
Conceive another political economy.
Occupy the square, the market, the city.
These things were are now considering.
It is time
to do this.
Ric Vrana is a Portland poet, active in the local literary scene as a featured reader and p\open mic participant. He has published three chapbooks and has appeared in a number of anthologies. He has a day job and a half and considers himself to be among those who can offer his kids a less comfortable world than was offered to him.