10 May 2007

a common saga

a hero's fall seems greater than all others
turned from a warrior to a mere slave
laughed at when claiming that all are brothers
expected to work himself straight to the grave

in keeping silence there's dignity we're told
but we have not seen the causes of all pain
the blazing heat the depth of wintry cold
the burning sun the freezing of the rain

no one can tell just what the message said
it stays a secret even though he died
the words have faded just like all the dead
what makes a hero is just that he tried

when everyone declared it could not be
he made the very wheels of history turn
the river changed its course into the sea
the city that had fallen did not burn

when pillars fall we blame the moving earth
heat and great fire emerge from the hard ground
another kind of world has seen its birth
we're fortunate to hear a different sound

tired and beaten still he made things change
the crash of palaces was his last great gift
the noise and light his senses could derange
yet all that others built fell in the rift

we face the tyrant and we're all afraid
what we have learned is that all heroes fail
the ones who do the deed are not repaid
the cheque has long been stolen from the mail

yet still he struggled and perhaps he won
we do not see his torturers these days
and though he could not see the living sun
we know that he was shining it its rays

there is no monument to these events
those who remember have not much to say
but even as we count and recount cents
we're heartened by what happened on that day

freedom's the greatest thing when you're a thrall
but thralldom's not the easiest thing to leave
power and pride don't always have their fall
but that is what the downtrodden must believe

still when the hero comes and does his thing
we're awed for a brief moment before life
once more obliges us into the ring
and we are stuck in the same futile strife

a moment more and even the deaf and dumb
shall tell you of the good times that might come

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