The Obama Issue: The Poetry

Southern Arizonans express themselves regarding the inauguration of the 44th president

Sunshine in winter—
Rays of warm light break dark clouds
as millions smile, clap.

—Patricia McGrath

Ode to Bush

oh bush, who lied for eight long years
a tribute i do give

your legacy we'll suffer, sad to say
as long as we all live

you come from such distinguished lines
that certainly formed your fate

eugenics and nazi bedmates
born of misguided hate

oh bush, you had a chance to change
your legacy of power

you could have left with head held high
instead you're forced to cower

you brought us cheney and endless debt
the patriot act and war

you spat on our constitution
and turned yourself into a whore

you failed the weak, the poor and sick
that took a lot of brass

so when you leave that old white house
let the door not hit you in the ass.

—Susi Learn

The Afterburn

The desert submarine
is diving falling to the
bottom of the ocean

We were floating in January
Captain says it will be a
fast slow fast fall to the floor

I'm choking on dust missed the bus.
I haven't had an egg in three months

Bread lines? Where's Obama when you need him?

Hey! I found a six pack for six dollars last month!

What the hell month is it?
June and no veggies yet.

Up and down over and over until we rock bottom

We have and it's Halloween
How about some Gambel's quail tonight?

—David Schweitzer

The Coffee Shop

Sitting in the coffee shop
The old men gather
Sipping coffee, discussing life
Predicting the future of a nation

They speak in plain language
Not mincing their words
Beliefs and values are spewed
Political correctness is not found here

Beware those who are different
Those who tread in unknown fields
Those who are not like me
Old men once echoed the voice of a nation

People hurt by segregation and poverty
Lives destroyed by aggressive militarism
Families devastated by corporate profiteering
A nation votes for transformational change

People gather in the coffee shop
Men, women, old, and young
Black, brown, and white
Liberal and conservative

They speak in tones of hope
Imagine a world united in peace
Optimism pouring from them
Excited by their thoughts and the possibilities

Shedding past prejudices
Tired of imaginary lines
Beliefs and values redefined
A nation steps forward for mankind

—Gail Bornfield

Not Impressed

Britain once believed in Tony Blair-
Oasis and Britpop endorsed their new leader
and what did that do?

Change is resisted by corporations and individuals,

Lennon, Gandhi, Malcolm X, King Jr., Gandhi—

All killed!

Besides, change isn't produced by a leader with the people's faith,
Dawkins said "Science is supported by evidence, and it brings results. Faith does not."

The Federal Reserve operates by the people's faith
and look where that's getting us.

I'll be impressed when the zeitgeist is:
"We don't need a leader, we can run our own lives."

—Anwiya Youkhanna

Presidential Puzzle

Help Obama get from WALL (Street) to MAIN (Street) by changing one letter at a time. (The alphabet trickle-down theory.) Here is a limerick containing the answer:

There once was a failure on WALL Street Consumers won't suck on the MALL's teat My vote was a MAIL-in (But not McCain-Palin) Obama's the MAIN Street for all feet

--Patrick Hynes

44 on 11/4/2008

Numbers of significance
numbers that may or may
not mean something to
anyone else.

Young people, beautiful in their diversity
in their quest to be
a part of something
this thing,

pulsing and hopeful.
In the unlikely story that is America
a staggered breath rattles with disbelief.

This is our chance to answer that call.

I'm clapping wildly in my living room
awash in words
just words
just words.

I'm crying ecstatically in my living room
awash in hope
just hope
just hope.

This moment, a history unfolding with each
of those staggered breaths,
this moment is unbelievably moving.

--Sina Evans

Presidential Journey

A long, arduous, and steep path to the pinnacle where family, friends, and supporters anxiously await, hoping you'll triumph so they can, too each of them in disguise as a sustaining boulder or branch along the way.

Did the idea of an adventure lure you? Did promises of lifelong prestige and success seduce you? Did the possibility of changing history wrap around you and carry you to the sun? Or did a simple person's need touch yours to help and give hope?

No array of advisers can assure survival or success so you'll have to depend on the provisions of your character, the depth of your tracks, the nourishment of your inner dream.

--Geneva Lopez

Not Without Consequences: Goodbye George W. Bush

your lies were a promontory
we thought we could not scale,
a cruelty we could not hoist ourselves over.
your perversions of truth
thrust us again and again into
the wide, starved raptor's gape of catastrophe.
we suffered your demons,
your manufactured sufferings,
your sneers and condescensions.
we died and killed and suffered
and sent others to
kill and die and suffer
because of your squalid arrogance,
the shameless ego of your ignorance.
yours was a creed of consumption,
fear and hegemony,
devouring and discarding,
all pompous, strutting
and empty vulgarity.
you were the arsonist of our dreams,
the fist concealed beneath the open palm,
the petty thief of the whole world's peace.
you continually perjured yourself
at our expense,
telling yourself lies
to ignite your rage,
using your fists, your mouth,
your henchmen,
your vetoes,
to beat us down,
deny our wishes,
silence our outcries,
destroy our planet.
what you called democracy
was a malediction,
a curse,
endless miasma,
and toxic sepsis
into the world.
and we were bloody festoons,
bleeding hearts,
in your trophy case,
prisoners in your
poisoned wake.
at last
we rose up
in long lines,
around the blocks,
orderly and quiet,
in the rain,
in the snow,
in the cities,
in the towns,
mothers and sons,
fathers and daughters,
students and sinners,
pastors and plumbers,
we rose up
ending our
expensive silence,
freed the words of our outrage
so long chocked down
or bullied into submission
by your petty laws and mongering hatred.
we ran the scoundrel and his clones out
to lift up our ebony conscience
and pour our earnest hopes
back into our schools, our clinics,
our children, our elders,
our sweet, gentle earth.
we sang as we
stood there
in line,
softly at first,
strengthening as
the numbers come in,
loud enough to be heard
'round the world
when the die was cast
at last
 "we shall overcome ...
   we shall overcome ...
     we shall overcome
       this day!"

--Kaitlin Meadows

2 B.H.O. 44 Prez On The One-TwoO-TwoOONine

Hey Obama don't you treat us wrong
ho (ho) hey
Tell me what'd I say
The Dream of MLK
Now it's real
But it's not done
Matter of fact it's just begun
Strange Bitter Fruit now is Sweet
But it's not ripe enough to eat
A promise is only KEPT today in you

It was made to others

Frederick Douglass
Harriet aka Moses
Cynthia, Carol,
Denise and Addie Mae

To name a few

Abe and Shaw
Cesar and Bulosan
They were promised too
And it took ALL of us
To make it come true

T2T Truth To Tell
PTU Props To You
In 3doubleO Nine
They well may say
THIS was the start of our Finest Hour
But T2P--Truth To Power
Now YOU have promises to keep
And miles to go before you sleep

No more fugazi shady
Boo boo head lady
FISA plays
What'd I say
What'd I say

We don't expect no more Cuban Inqs
Torture by any other name--it still stinks

No more laying us off
N' importin' poison toys made
With 3rd world slave wage toil


For oil

BOTH Green Machines
Need cleaning
But for the peeps pleasing
Not for the greasing
Of the sameo Massa's

EVERYBODY should get a doctor

And axe that pink triangle bashing

And oh yeah
Make sure you get Osama

Like Lieutenant Flipper and Jackie R
You'll know the burden
Being the First
It's a higher bar
A heavier obligation

Youse Mack Daddy Mark Tony OG
Of Flying Oration
Youse Primo Black Octavian
Of Melting Pot Nation
But remember what slaves whispered in THEIR ears
"Memento mori." Its dew in the sun--all those cheers

Don't be like Darth-Bush-Borg-Cheney
Plotting to be Augustus
"Be a Superhero--and Shit!"
Stand for Truth and Justice

And the 'Merican Tao
U.S. We Too
We've got fences to mend
Wounds given and got to tend
Unfork our tongues
Start flying Tuskegee straight
Assist in Love
Don't bomb in Hate

We've been zombies much too long
Forgot that to protect, not prey, upon the weak
Is what it is, being strong

Tell me what'd I say
The Dream of MLK
Now it's real
But it's not done
Matter of fact it's just begun
WE have promises to keep
And miles to go
Before we sleep

(Cynthia, Carol, Denise and Addie Mae, listed in the poem along with all the "famous" people, are girls who were murdered--too young, innocent, while preparing to worship their God--during the infamous 16th Street Baptist Church terrorist bombing on Sept. 15, 1963. I was 9 at the time.)

--Dr. E, aka Ken Kisser