In mist on country roads from Maringouin I went to a meeting at Southern University in Baton Rouge, an interesting place I do not go often enough, and that is black and so gives relief from white fatigue. I had stopped on the way to get my yard sign that says JOHN BEL EDWARDS, GOVERNOR — we vote November 21st, but I am voting early since I will be in New Orleans that day. (I am of course hoping for victory and an invitation to the right party.)
From Southern University I went on more country roads to a country brewery where there was live music and a dance, and spoke in French with one of the last Cajuns. I drove home along the bayou swelled with rain, and there were people riding horses.
The question we need to ask ourselves at this moment is what further provocations we require to justify digging in our heels. To put the question more pointedly: Are we willing to wait until the next presidential election, or for some interim congressional conversion experience, knowing that if we do wait, hundreds of our sons and daughters will be needlessly destroyed? Another poet, César Vallejo, framed the question like this:
A man shivers with cold, coughs, spits up blood.
Will it ever be fitting to allude to my inner soul? . . .
A cripple sleeps with one foot on his shoulder.
Shall I later on talk about Picasso, of all people?
A young man goes to Walter Reed without a face. Shall I make an appointment with my barber? A female prisoner is sodomized at Abu Ghraib. Shall I send a check to the Clinton campaign?
Garret Keizer said that in Harper‘s. Read the whole thing.