August 29, 2008

Pundits and Poets, Prophets and Politicians

I've been mostly avoiding the Democratic National Convention. Not that I do not care - I most certainly do. But for whatever reason my life seems to transcend politics these days. As the zen story reminds us:

There is a Taoist story of an old farmer who had worked his crops for many years. One day his horse ran away. Upon hearing the news, his neighbors came to visit.

"Such bad luck," they said sympathetically.

"We'll see," the farmer replied.

The next morning the horse returned, bringing with it three other wild horses.

"How wonderful," the neighbors exclaimed.

"We'll see," replied the old man.

The following day, his son tried to ride one of the untamed horses, was thrown, and broke his leg. The neighbors again came to offer their sympathy on his misfortune.

"We'll see," answered the farmer.

The day after, military officials came to the village to draft young men into the army. Seeing that the son's leg was broken, they passed him by. The neighbors congratulated the farmer on how well things had turned out.

"We'll see" said the farmer.

So I am excited for the new energy, the new blood, what Senator Obama's nomination means. I pray and work for his victory. But I am conscious of the political machinations and strategies, resonant with my own baser instincts for manipulation and scheming. I recall working the 2000 RNC in Philadelphia, and seeing so many Democrats in the arena, behind the scenes. In some way, it seems like a big game. So the spectacle of four days of politics and speeches - no thanks.

I am jaded perhaps. Unlike last night's rousing finale, with the Boss's dark and yet stubbornly proud "Born in the USA" thundering through the stadium, I leave you with Patty Larkin's song Pundits and Poets

Pundits and Poets, prophets and politicians
Buyers and sellers and keepers of information
Ivory towers look large on my television
Between commercials
Tell us all about your vision of

The sound of hope
The winds of change
The song of joy
A little light in the middle of the page

Gonna be a pretty crazy few months until November. Keep breating, y'all.....

1 comment:

Terrence McCarthy said...

A version of the " We'll see " thing was in the script for " Charlie Wilson's War." Phillip Seymour Hoffman spoke the lines. It was my favorite part of that flick,