Seriousness

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/seriousness/

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Oh, my, the face of the political machine.
Grim faces, hollow eyes, lies after lie,
One citizen who stands, remembers, raises a fist protesting,
In a game, a silly game, where men tackle men,
Where brains are shaken, battered and bruised,
So that humans may be equal. Why his fist now?
Why raised in protest? His brothers in arms,
From the streets he escaped, are beaten, broken,
With trials valid only in confusion. Murder and 
Murderers wear badges that shame the men and 
Women who give their hearts to the law.
Young black women, volleyball champions,
From a high school, a high school that
Sent countless youth to futures lacking hope, now those 
That were uncertain, rise. With pride born of knowledge,
These teenagers, born in the poor side of town,
Bear witness to the deeds of the bully pulpit. Against
Which female athletes rise for equality that
Great-grandmothers and fathers raised in conflict earned.
Denied for decades, for a century now. Time flies, promises fall
And the hatred based on color, sexual preference, sex.
Even sex still. An amendment to a constitution that
Gave women the power to make decisions, to be independent,
Yet we are dictated as to how our lives must center itself on trust,
Color should be celebrated. Voices raised in black churches.
Voices raised in protest. Signs written, petitions filed,
Congressmen and women elected that see us, hear us, raise us to
The seriousness of action, against inaction, refusing quiet.
These must become our battle flag. A voice that steadies.
So powerful that it rocks a nation of quiet shame,
Of angry men and women, of injustices and just protests.
We allow the beatings of First Nation peoples as their
Water turns black with oil and greed. Tall and proud
They stand, fearing nothing but inaction. A president
Feeding on the profits he earns while his ears are closed
To the Appeal for commonsense. We should be a Nation
Of commonsense, looking for the future of all of us.
"We the people" in earnest reformation "Of the United States of
America" the beautiful, the possible. "For liberty and 
Justice for all" shall carry a message of the cause Justice,
Of the welfare promised, of the charge that we be given "happiness."
For "We the People of the United States, in Order to form 
A more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic 
Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote 
The general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty 
To ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish
This Constitution for the United States of America."
This is the promise for which protests are just. 
This the hope of the poor, to be seen and raised.
The middle class, the wealthy. How mighty the voice
As it pours into the streets? A wave of determination.
Protestors meet immigrants with signs. Hello! Welcome!
Mighty the wave of compassion while we are poisoned
By the water we buy. Action instead of promises broken. 
Promise that we are the real voice of our nation,
The serious citizens of the United States, willing to resist
Compounding moments of shame formed by greed, fear and hate.
An interest rate we are unwilling to pay anymore. We are,
Willing to love, include, protest for equality
and against a voice that should never have emerged.
The ugly voice of racism, hatred, fear and indifference.
Pledging allegiance to a flag of action. Protecting
The welfare of all Americans, not just the few.
Brothers, Fathers, Sisters, Mothers bring your seriousness
To bear on the foolishness of folly in office.
We are a union of action shouting at the sound of profit
Born on the backs of the common citizen who works.
Serious times need serious measures they say. We rise to the
Call for justice for all, just like we pledged
In elementary schools, middle schools, military, congresses
Where the idea of patriotism was a promise to action.
Raise fists so that truth will come. We rise. We pledge.

Hamilton, Musical, Powerful, Soul Imprinting

Don’t believe that you can truly understand more than one thing at a time. Not 100 percent if you are multitasking. Not even mothers will have 100 percent understanding as they deal with work, commute, screaming child, sick child, obnoxious child who learned how to blow chocolate milk through his nose. No, each of those things can balance the others, some outbalance the others, but you can’t experience the whole picture. If most cases, you don’t want that whole picture. But then there are musical performances, books of a pure truth, insights that leave you momentarily undone. So it is with Hamilton.

It’s the sound, the pulse that bleeds into your awareness. Music is the novel of passion, played upon a stage that requires your ‘mind’, body and soul. Great operas ripped the tears from the ones who got it. Madam Butterfly, The Telephone, Bernstein’s Mass, 1776, Westside Story, these will catch you and leave you breathless feeling that you have felt or learned something great. They are stories. Novels.

With greatness that we miss in our busy days filled with office, school, ball games, little league, ballet lessons, commutes, and tae Kwon do, because we don’t pause to see. Great novels make the soul weep. Flowers for Algernon, the first time I read it out loud to students ripped into my consciousness and left me crumpled in front of fifth graders. When the principal walked in on the weeping, he backed out and never said a word. The Reprieved Reformation about a safe cracker who found a reason to change, to lose his greed and save his humanity. AS I Stand Here Ironing, a look at a mother, whose daughter once again is in trouble. Whose teacher wants the parent conference (hear the drumroll of fate calling), but who is HER daughter, HER creation.

Hamilton, a poor boy, orphaned, witness to plagues and treasuries, a man hated and reviled, clung to by women and worshipped, a man against odds, the man who created the treasury, and a duel. It plays like a Shakespearean Novel on the top 20 list of the BOTM  (book of the month) club. And it’s the presentation.

I performed in Bernstein’s Mass (what does a Jewish composer know of Catholicism?) where the priest who loses his faith, his congregation and his soul was portrayed as a young priest starting out and the disillusionment, the delusionment, the despair he felt that tore him to shreds balanced on notes that are harmonic in their disharmony. It tore us as performers apart, it silenced the audience and they left quietly, thinking. I saw it at the Kennedy Center the same way. It was beautiful and framed perfectly. I saw it at Lord Albert’s Hall where the priest was portrayed as a pedipiile and that WAS WRONG. It made me sick to watch or listen to it. The tenor changed the entire message. He was a tenor. Really. A European, a German tenor with a skeptical look at any chance of purity in the Church. A tenor who thought that Bernstein was mocking the church. No really, a German tenor trying to understand a jewish composer’s view of the catholic church as the congregation took and used…never mind, it just didn’t feel like what I had performed and seen performed. Granted I am from the upper MidWest where even the atheists have a feeling of respect for some concepts of church and community, except for pedipiiles.

That’s what we are trying to do, isn’t it? Trying to effect our readers and public with our vision of the world at that instant. Music takes the instants and compounds the eyes with ears, the blood with pulse, the soul with wonder, fear or hatred. I should have put my two careers together before this, the narration of exploring a saga by pace made so much clearer to me now.

I’m an intellectual, know as a nerd in this time and place, and I am attempting to write the great novel of my time. Arrogance in the least application. No, not arrogance. I want to be a writer to leave a footprint that I understood something beyond what I am now. I want to be for the future to seek guidance from and to turn that which is bloody and awful to a tale told by a fool about the purity of man.

It’s the sound, the pulse, the overwhelming focus on one incredible thing at a time. It’s a message that must speak of itself. It’s the dark calling to the nightmares, setting them into patterns. It’s why children put their noses under the covers while their eyes search the shadows.

Then the man from Hamilton speaks of his upbringing in Puerto Rico, an American territory. He tells of the tragedy of poverty, of exploitation by hedge funds who now attempt to topple the people by placing demands for payment against a government not allowed to file for bankruptcy. He speaks in the language of the musical Hamilton. He appears on shows including John Oliver’s. We know John Oliver as a man of intelligence and integrity who has a campaign against cigarettes internationally with Dave, a diseased lung. We know him as the exposer of lies and corruption. That he sides with Hamilton in his pursuit for justice for his home gives it credence.

The sound of children crying from hunger, orphans, health care costing twice for the same system we have on the mainland. They became a territory as a result of war. They have an honor roll of US Veterans of War and believe in the US as part of their nation. They still see the our hope as theirs. So we walk away and leave them adrift in a world of greed where teachers can’t teach because there is no money.

Hamilton. Novels, Operas, Comedies, Lies, Justice, Defeat. Ultimately, in order to understand life, you have to stop and focus on just that. You have to let go of what you think and what you feel without the experience and open your heart to the message. Hamilton has a focus for today. It’s powerful. I hope to write a novel with that kind of power of exposure someday.