The Passage Of The Dreams

Time is an illusion. Life is a cyclical event that begins and ends with youth.

The grass is cool on moon-dark summer nights
The backyard tree is black against the sky
The house asleep with but a few dim lights
And thoughts and dreams turn back to days gone by
To younger days when stars were still in reach
And star-filled dreams were easy to believe
The ten year old has much that he could teach
His older self if truth he’d but receive
The distant stars are near if you but find
The ten year old who once was lonely you
For travel to the stars takes but the mind
To take you there if you were only you
For time is but the passage of the dreams
The stars lent to that ten year old back then
That drifted with you down life’s winding streams
And now at age you dream of stars again

Manacle And Link

Slavery was a Southern phenomenon, and Southern slave owners were Democrats. The Republican Party was founded for the express purpose of ending slavery, and it did, at the cost of 320,000 dead young white men. Freed slaves who came north married and raised families, and were, in time, working class people like most of their neighbors. In seventy years, from 1865 to 1935, one lifespan, the descendants of those Republican voting freed slaves began to realign themselves with their former owners, the Democrats, and willingly and enthusiastically returned to the Democrat slave plantation, again dependent on their Democrat owners for their very existence. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

The Guinea coast, the barracoons
The misery, the stink
The slaver’s ship, laid down like spoons
The manacle, iron link
The passage west, unending night
The dark and foul filled hold
No room to move, no end in sight
The dead lay still and cold
The auction block, the bidders’ jokes
Hosed down, the captives wait
Surrounded by the laughing folks
Determining their fate
And then one day a distant drum
To shouts of Jubilee
They saw the Union soldiers come
And Lordy they were free
But that was then and this is now
In geologic blink
Descendants of those slaves allow
The manacle and link

Ottoman Redux

History repeats itself, but never in the same way. Events today seem likely to result, ultimately, in one regional power gathering in all the artificial countries cobbled together after WW1 by the British and French, and that regional power will be Iran or Turkey, and since it all was once a part of the Ottoman Empire, who made the fatal mistake of being on the wrong side in WW1, it is likely that at some point in the not too distant future the world will see a rebirth of the Ottoman Empire. But will we again see Ottoman galleys set out from the Golden Horn to ravage the coasts of Greece and Italy in search of booty and slaves? Possibly not. As stated above, history repeats but never in the same way.

Wild horsemen came from out the East
Faith Muslim, Mongol born
And settled near the Christian beast
Hard by the Golden Horn
Constantinople, stout stone walls
A thousand years it stood
Until bombards and great stone balls
Demolished them for good
The Eastern Empire of Rome
Had seen its sorrowed day
The place Justinian called home
Was gone and gone to stay
An empire rose in its wake
Atlantic to the Horn
The Med was now a Muslim lake
With Europe red and torn
Yet still the dream the Turk holds fast
Empire softly calls
To see again the storied past
From Constantinople’s walls

Not Being Venezuela

There is much talk of the current Republican Party being the Whigs of the 21st century, in that they too seem destined to cross the bar into Whigdom and disappear, to be replaced by a new national party. I believe this prognosis is correct, in that whether Donald Trump wins the election or not, the Republican Party will be changed for the foreseeable future. If Trump wins, the party will become much more populist, and if he loses it will fracture into its component parts, having lost five out of the last seven presidential elections, with little prospect of winning another anytime soon, given the leftward drift of the American voter, the growing power of the slave plantation Democrat vote and the permanent transformation of the Supreme Court into the judicial activist wing of the Democratic Party by the installation of an overwhelming majority of radical leftist justices. If Trump wins, the country has a chance of not becoming Venezuela. But not being Venezuela will be but a respite, for the future is assured. The Left has won, and it will take guns to undo them.

Democracy lasts only for so long
As voters do not come to realize
That in the background is a siren song
And when they do it offers them the prize
Free money if they vote the way they’re told
A gift that’s offered temptingly to greed
From public treasuries choked full of gold
And government to fill their every need
It matters not wherever it’s been tried
Disaster and collapse will follow soon
A marriage to the State soon leaves the bride
To ponder what was written on the rune
A thousand years ago is still held true
The colony, it says, beset by force
Succumbed because the people sought their due
But economic nature held her course
And so it is the underclass today
Who think the IOUs will always hold
And slavery with foodstamps is okay
Soon learn that all that glitters is not gold

The Little Boy And The Wolf

The world is full of slavering, red-eyed wolves, and the media, the plantation slaves and the leftist academia has put a little boy in the White House, who sits uncomfortably in the big leather chair in the Oval Office, his tiny feet dangling over the edge. He glances nervously at the red-eyed wolf seated opposite him, his little boy eyes wide and frightened. He closes his eyes and imagines himself elsewhere, in a forest, walking in the gathering darkness to grandma’s house.

A basket of goodies on his arm
His riding hood bright red
He knows he’ll come to no great harm
Should there be wolves instead
Of grandma at the cottage door
When he at last arrives
Ahead by forty is the score
From which no foe survives
He whistles gaily as the sun
Sinks slowly in the west
His mama told him he’s The One
The Light, the Moon, the Best
Then suddenly his path is blocked
A wolf with bright red eyes
So unexpectedly it shocked
The boy to his surprise
The wolf then took the boy in hand
And led him down the path
Past ruined nations all unplanned
Past dead who screamed in wrath
Arrived at last to grandma’s house
The boy was put to bed
A teddy bear and small gray mouse
A wolf kiss top of head

The Unlikely Empire

How could early 16th century Portugal, a tiny country of less than a million people, sitting on the edge of the civilized world, forge a global empire that rivaled that of England and Spain? The answer is brains, guts, determination, and a beckoning open expanse of restless ocean at its doorstep.

Sleek caravels of oak with shallow draft
Dropped down the Tejus on the King’s command
With iron-hard crews that knew their ancient craft
And to the sea and out of sight of land
They hugged the ragged, fetid Guinea coast
As step by step they journeyed further south
At headlands planted there a stone milepost
And mapped the rivers upstream from the mouth
In time they found the southernmost land’s end
Of Africa, and then sailed grimly on
To the unknown where strong trade winds would send
The ships to India one fated dawn
The riches of the fabled East went home
To Portugal where spices, silver, gold
Not seen since the far distant days of Rome
Were brought ashore to gloried stories told
Diaz, da Gama took their fragile ships
So fragile even for their early day
On voyages that ever would eclipse
All other journeys ever underway

The Caravel

Time is an illusion. With one stroke of a brush or pen time can be reversed and dreams and journeys renewed.

Built I a silver ship with one brush stroke
A caravel of olden tales well told
Her keel of hardened iron and burnished oak
Her parchment sails embossed with gleaming gold
At anchor on the lake she calmly rests
Adventure standing quiet by her side
The darkened starlit sky holds many tests
And sailed we on the swiftly running tide
The stars laid out for us a southern course
With dark red Betelgeuse to steer upon
We crossed the glittered snows of the fierce Norse
And to the golden land of Prester John
Where shining in the still and darkened night
The palaces of marbled polished stone
Shown with a ghostly mist of golden light
As if the time and world were theirs alone
Across the deep black sea we quickly sailed
Edirne, Ottoman, Sultan Mehmet
Constantinople, free, as yet unquailed
Yet in the dawn a shadowed minaret
The rising of the sun saw us near home
Below us tiny ships set sail from Tyre
Unknowing that one sorrowed day would Rome
Extinguish them with blood stained sword and fire
Sweet morning light crept softly through my room
And lilting birdsong lifted me awake
The caravel now tied up to the boom
At rest upon the placid silver lake

Third World Countries, Third World Minds

The collapse of socialist countries like Venezuela, which not so long ago was the richest country in South America with enormous oil wealth, are always explained away by the economists as “The curse of plenty,” in which countries that rely on natural resource exports may tend to neglect education because they see no immediate need for it. Economists explain further that resource-poor economies like Singapore, Taiwan or South Korea, by contrast, spent enormous efforts on education. No one will say the obvious, that it is not abundant natural resources that leads to neglecting education, it is the lack of abundant brains that results in, not leads to, a neglect of education. Why is North and South America, south of the United States, traditionally poor and poorly educated, despite abundant natural resources? It is because the people are descended from two cultures that were still in the Stone Age when they were chanced upon by advanced Europeans – indigenous Amerindians and Central Africans who were brought to the Americas as slaves, and these two Stone Age peoples intermarried to produce the majority population of Central and South America. Are all cultures equal? No. To say that Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea emphasized education because they were resource poor is absurd. They emphasized education because that is what First World people do. Venezuela did not emphasize education because they were resource rich but because that is what Third World people do.

The Renaissance in Europe
Art and science were the rage
While Aztecs, Incas, Bantus
Lived their lives in the Stone Age
Knots on rope a written message
Captives murdered to please god
That they tend to lag behind us
Is in fact not very odd
But of course it isn’t their fault
For the white man did them in
We debased their shining culture
And now wallow in our sin

Music Halls

In 1853, in the run-up to the Crimean War, London‘s music halls rang with a rollicking and defiant song, with the crowd standing and roaring the tag line, “The Russians Shall Not Have Constantinople!” It is ludicrous to think of a present day London theater crowd standing and roaring defiance at anything at all. Nor will there be defiance from an American audience so long as Obama is president.

The music hall, the Internet
Are really just the same
A place where sober people met
To plan and play the game
For those who owned the music halls
And told us what to sing
And those who made the midnight calls
And told us what to bring
The game was capturing the flag
A small step will be fine
And if the Other seems to lag
Then it is Auld Lang Syne
Miscalculation can ensue
The game is always fraught
And then the piper’s pay is due
For lessons now untaught

A Freshly Ploughed Mind

I spoke to a recent college graduate today, asking about the wisdom of allowing grown men who claim they believe they are a little girl to use the school shower facilities with little girls. Her mind having been freshly ploughed at great cost by a prestigious university, she was astonished that I would find something wrong with that, and fairly screamed,

A person has a right to be
Whatever gender he or she
Decides is best for him or her
And there’s no reason why a stir
Be made because a male who’s nude
Bathes with girls, that’s why a prude
Like you should be ashamed to show
Your face and just to let you know
I’m boiling mad to hear such hate
And furthermore just let me state
The courts en banc ruled just today
Identity is what you say
You are in fact whate’er you wish
A polar bear, a petri dish
A teapot or a childlike gnome
I’m so upset, dad, take me home