Government

Submitted by dalcassian on 4 October, 2016 - 6:26 Author: Carl Sandburg

The Government—I heard about the Government and
I went out to find it. I said I would look closely at
it when I saw it.

Then I saw a policeman dragging a drunken man to the
calaboose. It was the Government in action.

I saw a ward alderman slip into an office one morning
and talk with a judge. Later in the day the judge
dismissed a case against a pickpocket who was a
live ward worker for the alderman. Again I saw
this was the Government, doing things.

I saw militiamen level their rifles at a crowd of work-
ingmen who were trying to get other workingmen
to stay away from a shop where there was a strike
on. Government in action.

Everywhere I saw that Government is a thing made of
men, that Government has blood and bones, it is
many mouths whispering into many ears, sending
telegrams, aiming rifles, writing orders, saying yes
and no.

Government dies as the men who form it die and are
laid away in their graves and the new Government
that comes after is human, made of heartbeats of
blood, ambitions, lusts, and money running thru it
all, money paid and money taken, and money cov-
ered up and spoken of with hushed voices.

A Government is just as secret and mysterious and
sensitive as any human sinner carrying a load of
germs, traditions and corpuscles handed down
From fathers and mothers awav back._