Tuesday, March 01, 2005

All things...

All things must come to an end, but for which shall we mourn more: those things which ended before they had an opportunity to begin, or those things which have simply ended? It is said that anticipation is a spice on the flavor of appreciation, but is anticipation without result a poison on the mind?

Leaving here, two weeks from today. Yesterday, now. Time is telescopical closing in, every day brings a greater percentage of change. This is the way of the world. To look back now upon these things; folly or fortune?

Friends past, family left, loves lost? These things, possessions of a mortal mind, mayhaps murky misapprehensions of marshy misgivings?

Bah, who is to know?

It is strange that things, once felt so dearly, known so clearly, expressed so lovingly, agreed so completely, might twist and turn and tie us down. Strange that those things known then lost may return again to our minds, only to be taken away once more. Strange the flood of feelings accompanying the re-acquisition of once lost longings. Stranger still the evaporation of once-forgotten desires bringing a pain again anew and fresh, more painful than the last abandonment.

The people of my generation... no, more precisely, the people of my graduating class. We were the class of 2001, for those who do not know. Yes, I am young. Sue my parents if you must complain.
The class of 2001. Graduating high school, the first class of the new millenium. A bridge had been constructed for us, across which we would now pass, the first generation of the new thousand. Years of prosperity, economically, diplomatically, socially... these booms had coddled us, held us close to their breasts, whispered lullabies in our ears of an unending wealth and undying dream, of the accomplishments of those passed, and the yet to be fulfilled promises of our own age. Those promises were our own, ours to make and keep, ours to fulfill and exceed, ours to breathe and live. We were handed the torch, the flame passed on, and we would carry it proudly, strongly into the next millenium of human accomplishment. Where once those had been the pillars of the "Greatest Generation," ours was to be the "Can't Even Touch This Generation." The hammer, the sickle, fallen behind, the arms race dead, the boom of post war happiness, the triumph over the vanquished foe. Lessons from the past were repeated: victor, but not punisher, scorn the war and love the enemy. They would be our allies, our companions, co-authors in this next chapter, this great new struggle, not against a single enemy, no world superpower grappling with our strength. Rather it would be the world's super power, grappling with the prophesies of our own creation. Prophesies of a better tomorrow and a day after yet unsurpassed. United, strong, and free. United with our one time enemies, strong in drive and desire, free to help the world instead of simply ourselves.

We saw, one day, the destruction of our dream.

Forget not that we saw, before even our steps in resplendent gowns, the betrayal of democracy for the first time in the history of our nation. Certainly she was not a virgin when we came to her; she was tricked and coerced and manipulated by many a sleaze suitor before us; with list tamperings and poll intimidation, with votes from the dead and none from the living, with a college of electors no more noble than a grade school of thieves, but on this scale, to this magnitude, never before had it been seen. Never before the waiting, the dreadful waiting in the face of already known manipulations, and never before the circumvention of the single thing, that one, lonely, solitary thing left to the masses. Never before had our only systemic voice been tracheotomized; and so callously the act was performed. Our love had not been merely tricked, not merely coerced, not merely flushed with wine and food and subtle pressures. Our mistress, our love, our betrothed, had been raped before our very eyes. The brutes had come from their fortresses upon the hill, come down in gallant steed and shining armor, only to reveal in the end the fiery flare of conquest in the steed's eye; only to reveal the blood splattered and burn blackened tarnished armor of mercenaries. No noble act was committed, and none nobler for the doing, she had been taken from our embrace, we ripped from her bosom as the pikemen kept us clear. The men, or less, had taken her down to the flush fields of Florida, trampling a path in the knee-high grass, and thrown her harshly upon the land through which our blood had been sewn. They beat her, hit her with stick and sword and shield, broke her will, and so they thought, ours in the process, and finally, in the cruelest act of all, cut our eyelids off and forced our gaze in the direction of the terrific act, pressuring our pupils to accept what our hearts could not. The rape, the brutal act of violation, the injustice only they could perpetrate, as she was held down and singly in turn they forced themselves upon her. They bore no cross, only the banner and shield of the elephant, and that they shown our faces in their arrogance.

Nine months later, the beasts of flight struck our towers. Six months more, and our sons and fathers, our brothers, our fellow peasants, were taken from their homes, suited in paltry armor and outfitted with tattered weapon, marched to certain death in lands far from our own, to fight and die and kill in futile battle with what men we might otherwise have called our own brethren.

We have been trampled. Our lover has been raped. Our friends killed.

We held promise once, promise of greatness, the promise to surpass that which came before us.

That promise, unbroken by us, instead destroyed by the actions of others. Of the tyrants. Of the profiteers.

What more have we, save our will? What more have we, save the interminable ferocity of the downtrodden, the always struck, the nameless masses? What more have we, save our new promise: the promise of vengeance.

One day, our children may fulfill that promise set for us. One day, our children may carry our banner into that field and remember the blood and brutality that, though meant to break us, instead secured strength for those who might follow us.


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