fresh in the miracle of birth, your eyes were the universe

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FLYING THE FRENCH FLAG

You ignorant fuckers

You should know better

And the more kind and loving your reason for doing it

The worse it is

The more tragic it is

Because it’s not just a matter of lighting a candle

Fire is not a thing to be played with

Light can shine in any direction

But if you are trying to light a true path

Direction counts

 

An image is never neutral

It speaks – some say a thousand words

Flags fly over armies

Judge a flag by what its army has done

If you wave the French flag

You are waving it over tortured and murdered bodies

In Algeria, Vietnam, Mali, the Congo,

The list goes on around the world

And back again to Paris and Marseilles

A nation state is a flag, an army, and the class that gives it orders

You are not in the loop

It’s not your flag

Nor the Union Jack nor the American rag…

It’s the flag of the army that will come to slaughter you

If you try to change the world and look like you might succeed

Threaten their power

And you will find out whose flag it is

 

I know many of you are kinder than me

Have more courage

Understand things I don’t

Live up to what you believe in

I know you see the same terrible things I see

And you don’t sit back, you’re hungry for ways to fight against it

And I understand the beauty of such vast numbers of people

Around the world reaching out for a symbol to say

Our hearts are with you

One simple gesture

In such a great wash of human sympathy

It could almost change the meaning of the flag

But it doesn’t

It still belongs to the army and the class that governs it

And they have plans

They will use every wave of that flag as a vote in a referendum

War doesn’t happen by accident

What would a flag be without a big parade behind it

And if you wave that flag, you are marching in the parade

From Silence: Lectures and Writings, by John Cage:

From Silence: Lectures and Writings, by John Cage:

“With clarity of rhythmic structure, grace forms a duality. Together they have a relation like that of body and soul. Clarity is cold, mathematical, inhuman, but basic and earthy. Grace is warm, incalculable, human, opposed to clarity, and like the air. Grace is not here used to mean prettiness; it is used to mean the play with and against the clarity of the rhythmic structure. The two are always present together in the best works of the time arts, endlessly, and life-givingly, opposed to each other.

“’In the finest specimens of versification, there seems to be a perpetual conflict between the law of the verse and the freedom of the language, and each is incessantly, though insignificantly, violated for the purpose of giving effect to the other. The best poet is not he whose verses are the most easily scanned, and whose phraseology is the commonest in its materials, and the most direct in its arrangement; but rather he whose language combines the greatest imaginative accuracy with the most elaborate and sensible metrical organization, and who, in his verse, preserves everywhere the living sense of the metre, not so much by unvarying obedience to, as by innumerable small departures from, its modulus.’ (Coventry Patmore, Prefatory Study on English Metrical Law, 1879, pp. 12-13)

“The ‘perpetual conflict’ between clarity and grace is what makes hot jazz hot. The best performers continually anticipate or delay the phrase beginnings and endings. They also, in their performances, treat the beat or pulse, and indeed, the measure, with grace: putting more or fewer icti within the measure’s limits than are expected (similar alterations of pitch and timbre are also customary), contracting or extending the duration of the unit. This, not syncopation, is what pleases the hep-cats.”

Medea’s Incantation

Israel

Veni, veni, Emmanuel. Captivum solvet israel

 

Blame it on the Nazis

Blame it on the ovens

That burned even the survivors

Palestinians are the second victims

Jews, again, the third

It’s like child abuse, we tell ourselves

Trying to make sense of the atrocities

That leap up out of the front page every morning.

How can it be? Not you, not you, Israel

Nothing makes me hate my own country more than what it has done to you

Turned you into its whore, armed you and set you loose among its enemies

Psychotic warped and twisted child abuser

Grown up out of your own terrible abuse

But no frail and broken-hearted innocent

No. Strong. With a heart of stone

Nourished on the Red, White and Blue vein

I stare with hatred into the whorehouse window

At the jewel-encrusted pimp’s hand

That caresses your bloodstained cheeks

I hear the wail of dying children

Your laughter freezes my heart

The Midas touch

I loved you so much

Israel – the long version

Veni veni emmanuel. Captivum solvet israel

 

It’s not a religion Moshe told me

It’s a contract

That’s what made the holocaust

So hard to understand

God broke the contract

 

I read about the bomb blast twisted wheelchair and thought of …

 

Long dead Moe rolling down the hospital corridor

Waving his missing leg and breathing on one lung

Son of a rabbi, son of a rabbi’s son

But you went your own way

Big Moe with the little cigars

How god punished you for that

 

Jeff – in stage crew working on the lights

My buddy Pat yelled down

Hey Jeff, why don’t you wet your finger and stick it in the socket

– then I could feel just like Hitler frying another jew

And you called back, hey pass me another box of nails

The fucker keeps movin’ his arm

But you were outnumbered

The only Jewish kid in a hundred miles

 

Sherman, who practically lived at Hillel House. So studious, so principled, so concerned when neither or Chris nor I could speak a word. We were too stoned, our acid thoughts flying so much higher than our too solid tongues. When I finally got out one word – okay! – you looked so relieved I felt bathed in an almost mother love.

 

Bagels. How the room roared because everyone in the cafeteria had taken a deep breath at the same time just as I blurted out over the silence…

What’s a bagel?

 

How I was always threatening to buy a beanie with a propeller on it.

 

Late at night in New York City

After we did the shake rattle and roll

Every time someone read out the name of Haemon

Moe and I, arm in arm

Skipping down the streets of the village singing

Here comes Peter Cottontail

Hopping down the bunny trail

Hippety-hoppety Easter’s on it’s way

 

Chapter two. Golden tongued Robbie Stern at the head of the march, tall and strong and confident, with a deep bass voice leading us in the Black Panther chant

Power…

Power

Power to the people…

Power to the people

The people’s power…

The people’s power

Getting stronger by the hour

Getting stronger by the hour

 

Danny the Red, outside the shipyards

With the Mayday leaflets. You trip over a

Railroad tie and the fascists close in.

I come in between, my hands balled into fists

And they stop, confused – isn’t he one of us?

 

Now I will make my claim. You will not believe, but I grew up without having the least scrap of anti-Jewish prejudice. You were the heroes of Exodus and the Warsaw Ghetto. You fought the Nazi war machine with sticks and homemade bombs. You were Paul Neuman, you were Anne Frank. To hate you in any way would have been to put on the most evil uniform in history. And as I became a man and learned the true story of my “race”, I came to see that Hitler had good reason to fear you. You were there, everywhere, in science, in the arts, but most of all – in every fight against injustice. You had your criminals and monsters, but you more than any other people were the conscience of our planet.

 

Jews taught me to hate racism

Jews taught me to love the Vietnamese

Jews taught me to hate Israel and love Palestine

Jews taught me that

I judge Israel with their eyes

 

Blame it on the Nazis

Blame it on the ovens

That burned even the survivors

Palestinians are the second victims

Jews, again, the third

It’s like child abuse, we tell ourselves

Trying to make sense of the atrocities

That leap up out of the front page every morning

How can this be? Not you. Not you, Israel

Nothing makes me hate my own country more than what it has done to you

Turned you into its whore, armed you and set you loose among its enemies

Psychotic warped and twisted child abuser

Grown up out of your own terrible abuse

But no frail and broken-hearted innocent

No. Strong. With a heart of stone

Nourished on the Red, White and Blue vein

I stare with hatred into the whorehouse window

At the jewel-encrusted pimp’s hand

That caresses your bloodstained cheeks

I hear the wail of dying children

Your laughter freezes my heart

The Midas touch

I loved you so much

The Lost World

what if you were living in a science fiction world

and your skies were filled with alien machines

if alien beings ruled the earth

what if when you fought back with sticks and stones

the machines would slaughter you

but when you hid, they would come for your children

 

what if you were living in a science fiction world

with alien beings and their killing machines,

and the only possibility of resistance,

the only means of causing pain for pain…

what if the only aliens you could touch

were the alien children and what if

the alien children were as innocent

and sweet as your own

 

 

 

WHAT IS TO BE DONE

from the London Preview of LOVE, SCIENCE and REVOLUTION

WORD at the Small World Festival

From the PBS Free Fringe Benefit at the Hackney Attic

pbs free fringe benefit

London preview: SCIENCE, LOVE and REVOLUTION

by David Lee Morgan (music by Michael Harding)

Wednesday, July 24, 7:30pm

with special guest features:

Tshaka Campbell, Kat Francois, and Zena Edwards

@Vibe Gallery, 100 Clements Road, Bermondsey, SE16 4DG London 

Is it all over? What’s left of the communist ideal, now that the great revolutions of the last century have been defeated? UK Slam champion David Lee Morgan spits rhythm, rhyme and intense lyrics over music composed by Michael Harding of Animat.

Hosted By Uncle Errol: The night will begin with an Open Mic section, and then top performances from three of the biggest names in UK spoken word,  Zena Edwards, Kat Francois, and Tshaka Campbell, followed by the main event: David Lee Morgan spitting poems from the heart.

No Charge at the door!!!! (donations accepted) All that is required is your presence 🙂

HOW TO FIND THE VIBE GALLERY: http://www.vibeplace.com/about-us/location/#map

Facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/events/275536809258668/?fref=ts#sthash.M6YJjxbN.dpuf

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