Ithaca Blog

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Todd Saddler: "I'm Going To Live A Hundred Years"

We recently ran a poem by our friend Todd Saddler here on Ithaca Blog, about Haiti.

Here's another, more generic, called "I'm Going To Live A Hundred Years."

* * *

I'm going to live a hundred years
out of pure spite and defiance

Long enough for medical science to cure all my ills
and long enough to see universal health care in the United States of America

Long enough to watch people tooling around on Mars
possibly even long enough to see farm workers get their rights enshrined in law

Long enough to celebrate the end of the last war
and surf on the wave that washes ashore when the last mighty empire falls into the sea

I'll attend the funeral of corporate personhood
and join the choir as we sing "the quiet joys of anarchy"

My wife and I will celebrate our 66th wedding anniversary by walking across the dry river bed
of what used to be Niagara Falls (Canadian Side), the water evaporated, the nations retired,
the border dissolved at last

And for my one hundredth birthday I'll celebrate by drinking my age in pints of beer
Why don't you join me? Consider yourself invited

Then we'll finally have time to toast the downfall
of every principality and power that ever we railed against

To shed a tear for every species that went extinct during our glorious lifetime
and to throw a bushel of rose petals from the top of a space elevator

And when I slice off my ear building a piece of furniture
out of oak that I myself handled as an acorn
then a zero emissions ambulance will swing low and sweep me to the hospital
where that ear will be mended almost as well and fast
as if Jesus himself took pity on me in spite of everything I've been accomplice to

And when my ear is thus restored I'll whistle high and wee
and saddle up my donkey for the ride home

Yes, if we will but endure and hold true we will see all this and more:
All bad things must one day end.

- Todd Saddler

No comments: