What can they do to you? Whatever they want. They can set you up, they can bust you, they can break your fingers, they can burn your brain with electricity, blur you with drugs till you can t walk, can’t remember, they can take your child, wall up your lover. They can do anything you can’t blame them from doing. How can you stop them? Alone, you can fight, you can refuse, you can take what revenge you can but they roll over you. But two people fighting back to back can cut through a mob, a snake-dancing file can break a cordon, an army can meet an army. Two people can keep each other sane, can give support, conviction, love, massage, hope, sex. Three people are a delegation, a committee, a wedge. With four you can play bridge and start an organisation. With six you can rent a whole house, eat pie for dinner with no seconds, and hold a fund raising party. A dozen make a demonstration. A hundred fill a hall. A thousand have solidarity and your own newsletter; ten thousand, power and your own paper; a hundred thousand, your own media; ten million, your own country. It goes on one at a time, it starts when you care to act, it starts when you do it again after they said no, it starts when you say We and know who you mean, and each day you mean one more.P.S. I just found out on Piercy's website that she wrote a memoir called Sleeping with Cats, published in 2002. Click to link at the name of the book and have a look at the review excerpts.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
"The Low Road"
A couple of months ago I rediscovered this old poem by Marge Piercy. It is from her book The Moon Is Always Female.