Elegy For the Old Republic

by Michael Gillan Maxwell

“Spitting? Really Wyatt!? Knock it off. That's totally gross!”

“ I can't help it Rosie, I'm so pissed off, that's all I can do. You call the shit in this paper news? ‘Dog Accidentally Shoots Man With His Own Gun, Swedish Man Bursts Into Flames on Train Platform, The Truth About Elvis's Hidden Extraterrestrial Daughter.' Seriously? Enough about Elvis already.  Everybody's home jerkin' off to media-invented Stepford pop idols, hypnotized by football games and glued to shows like Gettysburg on Ice, and Home Shopping Marathon. It's all just puppet theater meant to distract us. Where's the coverage about the eviction? You tell me there ain't a conspiracy when they synchronize the eviction of the Occupy protesters from every camp in the country at the same time?”

“Wyatt, if it makes you feel any better, I heard someone say that they can evict us from the camps, but they can't evict an idea!” 

“My God Rosie, just look at us. Used to be you burned your bra and I lit my draft card on fire. What do we do now? Burn our AARP cards?  Although that bra does make you look like an Amazon space goddess from Forbidden Planet.” 

“Oink oink Wyatt! You know how on it turns me it when you talk like a sexist pig!” 

“Rosie, I'm just sayin', there's a lot more to it than meets the eye. Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain? I don't think so. He's the one jerkin' our chains. People gotta wake up and admit things ain't right. Climate change is real and multi-national corporations own our ass. Next thing ya know they'll be frackin' the frickin' streets of New York City. The Hopi shamans had it right all along. This little robot fairyland matrix holograph is coming to a screeching halt. That's a good thing, but it'll be a Hell of a lot less jarring and painful if we're all awake when it's happening. We gotta start taking care of each other and stop following charlatans who call themselves leaders. They're playing us all like Howdy Doody marionettes. Time to stop listening to jokers who can't tell Plato from a platypus. They're all so lost and confused they think the only way to relate to another human being is to pepper spray them!”

“Wyatt, right now you sound like the world's largest source of natural gas. They'll be fracking you if you don't settle down. You're ranting & nobody likes a ranter. And please don't start up again about the Mayan calendar, Illuminati and the Dark Lords. It gives me the heebie jeebies when you do that. Seriously, you sound like some kind of raving hybrid between Thomas Paine, L. Ron Hubbard and Rush Limbaugh on crack. Who puts these crazy ideas in your head anyway?” 

 “Rosie, I told you that Tonto and Tinker Bell do.” 

“Who are they again?” 

“They're my spirit guides, Rosie. We talked about this.” 

“Oh my God Wyatt, please don't say things like that out loud in public.”  

“OK smartypants, then how do you explain things like mysterious power outages, bank websites going haywire, cell phones not working, poisoned water wells and that freak I found outside the house going at our cable box with a screw driver?” 

“He was just a telephone repairman Wyatt.” 

“Telephone repairman, my ass. Our telephone didn't need repairing. More like Men in Black, if you ask me!” 

“Well, I didn't ask you Wyatt. You're just really paranoid.” 

“Hell, ‘just because you're paranoid, doesn't mean they're not after you.' That's from Catch 22.  Joseph Heller knew the score.”

“Wyatt, what the Hell are you doing? Get off the railing. You'll break your neck if you fall.” 

“Hold on darlin', just give me a minute. I got a speech to deliver. ‘Can you hear me now? Attention all you shadow people. Yes, YOU behind that curtain, wrapped in your coats of many dollars, hidin' behind the smoke and mirrors of legislation bought with blood money! I hereby occupy this doorway! You think you can control us? Guess what? The time when you elitist bastards control all the resources, money, energy, land, food, health care, education, information and freedom is comin' to an end. Game over. Sorry. I ain't your organ grinder's monkey! I refuse to buy your useless crap I never needed in the first place. I ain't payin' dues to join your club, buyin' protection to keep my identity safe, or payin' to extend my warranty. I ain't upgradin' my system when the one I already got works perfectly fine. I won't contribute to your campaign, send my kids off to war, or come back to the church. I refuse to bet against myself with your stinkin' life insurance, roll over my 401 K, invest in your latest ponzi scheme, or buy an arsenal of ammo and retreat into a bunker to protect myself from your manufactured Armageddon. I'm takin' my ball and goin' home. I don't hate you. That's just playin' your game. I bless you. You can say what you want but I ain't buyin' what you're sellin'. I don't care if you don't like it. I'm goin' down swingin', but I still bless you!”

“OK Spartacus, that was quite a speech. Are you done? Will you please come back down, now? 

 “Look at all this trash Rosie! Doesn't anybody care anymore?”  

“You should talk brother. Didn't you just spit on the sidewalk? Anyway, this all got left behind when the protesters got booted out of the camp. Wyatt, listen to me. We're all gonna to be OK. Everything's gonna work out. Trust me. Keep shining your light. Speak your truth. Nobody's got any control over you if you don't buy into fear and push back on it. You know that.  All we can do is to keep on doing what we can, from wherever we are, with what we've got.” 

“Yeah Rosie, I guess you're right. I hope you're right about all of it.” 

“Listen to us Wyatt. We're beginning to sound like characters in a Beckett play. I think we need go down to Flannigan's and occupy some barstools. We deserve a beer.”