Anarchy Works

via Flickr”]Anarchy in Palermo I (bis)

This is a poem that leads off a book I am reading titled Anarchy Works by Peter Gelderloos.  The book is actually Copyleft (no copyright), so I could just write it down and claim it as my own, but I won’t.  It’s a great poem, and I have been reflecting on its last couple lines a lot lately.  I hope you enjoy it, too.

There are hidden stories all around us,

growing in abandoned villages in the mountains

or vacant lots in the city,

petrifying beneath our feet in the remains

of societies like nothing we’ve known,

whispering to us that things could be different.

But the politician you know is lying to you,

the manager who hires and fires you,

the landlord who evicts you,

the president of the bank that owns your house,

the professor who grades your papers,

the cop who rolls your street,

the reporter who informs you,

the doctor who medicates you,

the husband who beats you,

the mother who spanks you,

the soldier who kills for you,

and the social worker who fits your past and future into a folder

in a filing cabinet

all ask


It would be anarchy.”

And the daughter who runs away from home,

the bus driver on the picket line,

the veteran who threw back his medal but holds on to his rifle,

the boy saved from suicide by the love of his friends,

the maid who must bow to those who can’t even cook for


the immigrant hiking across a desert to find her family on the other side,

the kid on his way to prison because he burned down a shopping

mall they were building over his childhood dreams,

the neighbor who cleans up syringes from the vacant lot,

hoping someone will turn it into a garden,

the hitchhiker on the open road,

the college dropout who gave up on career and health insurance

and sometimes even food so he could write revolutionary poetry

for the world,

maybe all of us can feel it:

our bosses and tormentors are afraid of what they would do

without us,

and their threat is a promise–

the best parts of our lives are anarchy already.


About ben adam

The world is going to hell in a handbasket, and we might miss Armageddon because we're too busy watching MTV and CNN. Please, read a book, throw a ball, bake some bread, and for goodness sake, turn the TV off.
Gallery | This entry was posted in Anarchism, anti-capitalism, Anti-imperialism, Anti-militarization, Poem and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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