In a Silenced World, A City of Fanfare
Usually, when Morning Edition goes off on my morning alarm, I am awakened only to slip back into a half-sleep where dreams distort the stories on the news into hyped, fantastical visions. Prison reform turns into graduate school admission, skiing deaths turns into a maccabre Blair Witch-esque mountaintop trail of death, all while the sounds, voices, words, and music stay the same. But this morning, a rare and distinct thing occurred. My dream corresponded exactly to what was being said on the radio during a story of the Second Inauguration of G-Dubs. I even sensed the excitement of the city on the verge of elaborate celebration. In it, I was a poor student who tried to get a view of the presidential balls, the parades, and festivities that were being played out in the city of my dreams. Accomplishing this was hard; it is, after all, a Republican administration, and therefore I was too poor to have access to any of the events, let alone a view--the only hotels and apartments that overlooked the squares of the city were gentrified, million-dollar condos and five-star dormitories for the wealth-drenched hoards and cohorts of the Republican Party. Nonetheless, there was Dubs, the real deal--erh, the Real Deal--in the Archives, looking over the Constitution for the first time in his life, and the Bill of Rights for the first time in his life, and the Declaration of Independence for the first time in his life. And there he was in the monumental halls of the city, surrounded by his patrons and the social debutantes of that plush circle. Swarms followed through the city, strutting about with them Negro attendants, cigars, white cashmere scarves, top hats, adultered wives in cream-colored evening gowns and long gloves, crystals, and pearls. On the hillsides in the distance were the slums--Dickinsonian terrains of rubbled alleys and the cold, bittered thresholds of tenaments and projects and ghettos. Where the bright inaugural city ramparted the hill top, in the valleys ran expressways and train yards, strip malls, coal plants, and powerhouse factories of soot and sore. The whole breadth of the valleys powerless and silent. There was that fucker Bush walking down the promenade with Laura--drugged and mechanized as usual--on arm in a bright blue dress and a necklace of diamonds, the Legion of the Sedated marching behind, singing anthems of pomp and circumstance, waving banners of Liberty, and Righteousness, and Truth, and Power, and God, and White, and Gold, and Christian, and Freedom. This was my dream of the 43 Inaugural, this morning and eve, as Morning Edition brought me out to face the cold.
Much like the City on the Hill that I dreamed, and Bush campaigned for, he and his cronies imagine and rule from, with no diminished pomp and circumstance of my own dream. In it, they willingly remain silent, oblivious, and ignorant of the valleys, the source of their exploitation, and the source of their power. They are seductresses and sorcerers. I hope Condi Rice isn't as big a bitch as Secretary of State as she was in her confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. I hope Bush isn't as big a dumb fuck as he has been his entire meaningless, putrid, mean, unjust life. He is his own Niphirim, Titan, Hercules, and Messiah, tramping the earth and othering creation. This, too, will be an inauguration of the other.
Chanson d'installation: Sufjan Stevens, Seven Swans