Friday, May 16, 2003

Seize the image
by Skald Hareksson

They want us to bow our heads and shuffle. They want us to smile, shuck and jive. They want us to apologize for being unemployed. They want us to beg them for help. They want us to praise their Gods and damn their devils. They want us to surrender our ferocity, our fire, and our dignity. They want us to tow their line: "all drugs are evil all the time" (unless they prescribe them). They want us to follow their rules. They want us to be predictable, safe, and sterile. They want us to be good little consumers. They want us to be good little workers. They want us to keep their appointments, accept their diagnoses, take their medications, submit to their treatment, follow their intervention plans, take their classes, see their doctors, ......

They want us to buy their useless gadgets. They want us saddled with rent, credit cards, bank loans, car payments, insurance bills, utility bills---- OBLIGATIONS.

They want us to accept the image they project: that we are poor, pitiful, depraved, mentally ill, chemically imbalanced, undisciplined, unfashionable, uncool, ---- VICTIMS.

I say fuck them! I say its time to seize our images. I say its time to raise our heads and stare them straight in their shifty little eyes. No more apologizing. No more bullshit stories. No more.

Let's re-define ourselves! We are the descendants of a noble tribe... we are poets, pilgrims, pagans, painters, artists, avatars, wanderers, warriors, nomads, hobos, holy men, earth women, shamans, searchers, sufis, sadhus, sorcerers, sculptors, saints. We carry on the noble tradition of Thoreau in his cabin, Jesus in the desert, Buddha under the tree, Mohammed wandering thirsty, a million Hindu sadhus.

We carry on the tradition of the Beat Poet dharma bums. We carry on the tradition of Whitman and Basho.

We defy the suburban social workers and their forms and their shelters and their curfews and their judgements. We defy the psychiatrists and their BMWs. We defy the rich donors and their gaudy jewelry and self-congratulating smirks. We defy the drug warriors and the police. We defy the SUV assholes. We defy the latte-liberals. We defy the suits.

We are fierce and we are free!

We are the new tribe. We are Hobopoets!

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