American Dream

There once was a dream
Of fraternal freedom and
Liberty of thought and faith,
Where the shackles of
Taxation and empire control
Were thrown off with
Patriotic fervour; where
Alms became arms, and
Pulpits political platforms.
The dream of freedom
Became the cotton and
Tobacco colonial constitution
Where the white men with
Their deist sensibilities raised
Their flag for all the Europeans
To see, whilst the negro and
The redskin, under force of arms,
Saluted their new masters
As they sang along to the
Piccolo orchestra of the
Military marching band.

Back then the dreams of empire
Were dreams of the enemy,
And who would have thought
That one day the empire spirit
Which had been breathed in
And woven into the fabric of
This new nation state would
One day incarnate in all its
Neo-liberal inglory?
Who would believe that dreams
Of freedom would be watered
Down by water canon in the
Southern heat on Southern streets
Whilst a million men marched,
In peace, just to be seen as
Human by inhuman klansmen?

How this land has changed from
The redskins of the Appalachia
To the rednecks of Alabama,
Where the stomping elephant
And the braying donkey –
Circus beasts both – continue
The pantomime of the
American dogma of the
American dream of Presidents
In the January snow pledging
Allegiance to the constitution
Whilst the world cowers from the
Droning senators, with their
Regime-change rhetoric, and the
Drones that bomb their homes
And freedom dreams whilst
The computer game is played by
Traumatised teenagers fatigued
In their military fatigues.

There once was a dream that
Has since become a nightmare
From which the rest of us are
Waiting to be woken from, and
Only the lessons from history
Keep us sane in the safe knowledge
That every empire’s sunrise
Has its sunset, and in the night
Which follows may we all
Dream sweetly of real freedom,
Uncomplicated by the military complex,
Where arms return to alms
And freedom is indeed free.