Disclaimer: After the most recent attack in Paris and the continuing struggle against IS in Iraq, Syria and Kurdistan, I notice the same arguments made by those unwittingly (or purposefully) apologizing for the violence perpetrated because of, in the name of, and motivated by some (if not many) of the tenants of Islam. The term “Islamaphobia” again cropped up all over the place and brought us back to the Harris/Azlan debate regarding Islam and the West. What I wanted to do was to see how this language sounded when I replaced “Islam” and “Muslim” with “Fascism” and “Fascist.” I chose Fascism because it is overwhelmingly dismissed and wholly discredited as a belief system by an overwhelming majority of people. To be clear, I am not a Fascist, and do not support ascist beliefs. I am using the terms as a stand-in because I would argue that religious views, Islam in particular, are similarly discredited. I looked into recent articles and “scholarship” on the issue of Islamaphobia and, I will admit, lifted some of the language to make sure I stayed as true to the way of speaking but only changed the descriptive nouns. All rights to those words that can be asserted are given, and I want to be clear that I am not lifting the ideas themselves but  am more interested in how political language like this is used to confuse and obscure issues.

So what does it sound like when you talk about a different discredited belief system the way people today talk about Islam? Keep reading: 

Je Suis Charlie

The Dangerous Rise of Facismophobia

A new and concerning trend has developed in the West as of late: Fascismophobia. This rising trend, a hatred or suspicion of Fascists, only serves to foster resentments against a tradition supported by millions of followers. This chorus of voices has said things such as “Fascism is inherently violent” or “Fascism justifies murder” and “Fascists are bad people.” However, other learned scholars have sought to understand this new trend, the fundamental flaws and the danger it imposes to democracy.

Recently a sociological journal defined Fascismophobia as racism, particularly a continuation of anti-European and anti-Anglo racism. Yet another recent report defines Fascismophobia as an attitude that incorporates the following beliefs:

  • Fascism is monolithic and cannot adapt to new realities
  • Fascism does not share common values with other major beliefs systems
  • Fascism as a belief system is inferior to the West.  It is archaic, barbaric, and irrational.
  • Fascism is a belief system of violence and supports terrorism.
  • Fascism is a violent political ideology.

Fascismophobia is a contrived fear or prejudice fomented by the existing global power structure.  It is directed at a perceived or real Fascist threat through the maintenance and extension of existing disparities in economic, political, social and cultural relations, while rationalizing the necessity to deploy violence as a tool to achieve “civilizational rehab” of the target communities (Fascist or otherwise).  Fascismophobia reintroduces and reaffirms a global racial structure through which resource distribution disparities are maintained and extended.

The popularization of the term ‘Fascismophobia” goes back to the 1990s by a right-leaning British think tank. Their report entitled “Fascismophobia: A Challenge for Us All” documented “closed” views of Fascism in the U.K., including perceptions of the belief system as a single bloc that is barbaric, sexist, and engaged in terrorist activities.

Recently an attack by those claiming to be Fascists in Paris has fueled an anti-Fascist backlash in France, with political leaders the world over trying to use this horrific act of violence to further a xenophobic and repressive agenda–all while claiming to stand for “unity” and “peace.” The mainstream French parties are all trying to conceal their responsibility for the social and political deterioration and the noxious climate in which we are living. While pretending otherwise, they are cultivating a xenophobic and racist atmosphere, fear of foreigners and people who are different. It is a breeding ground for hatred. They want to divide working people and subordinate them to their politics and to their social order, which causes the barbarism they claim to oppose. The epitome of cynicism is Marine Le Pen, whose main business is xenophobia and targeting immigrants and foreigners many of whom are Fascists.

These reactionaries have only focused on those who commit violent acts and have attributed those acts to Fascism itself, rather than the few who have committed crimes in its name. Writers on the subject ignore all the good Fascism has had on the world. From scientific development to modern means of transportation and communications Fascism is responsible for the technological world we live in. Fascism focuses on the family and the state and aims to put them at the center of citizen’s lives. Ignoring these positive aspects of Fascism by only discussing the worst of those who claim affinity to Fascist beliefs, intellectuals are presenting a distorted image of the millions of Fascists worldwide and the strong tradition they uphold.

Others have regretted employing the term ‘Fascismophobic’ as a descriptor of an anti-Fascist individuals or activities in the first place. Characterizing someone as a Fascismophobe implies that they are “insane or irrational,” and impedes constructive dialogue, obscures the context-specific roots of the observed hostility, and erroneously portrays anxiety about Fascists as a minority in society. The key phenomenon to be addressed is arguably anti-Fascist hostility, namely hostility towards an ethno-political identity rather than hostility towards the tenets or practices of a worldwide belief system.

The hard to ascertain definition mean Fascismophobia is usually just a shorthand way of referring to dread or hatred of Fascism and, therefore, to fear or dislike of all or most Fascists. In retrospect, it would have been as accurate, or arguably indeed more accurate, to say this definition was a shorthand way of referring to fear or dislike of all or most Fascists—and, therefore, dread or hatred of Fascism. In either case, we must consider the implications of this rising trend and the potential for resentment against Fascists to become more violent.

If you are like me, you are confused and disgusted by how this sounds. Isn’t there something to the beliefs that inform people and motivate their actions? Does speaking in this way make sense, provide something useful? It seems hard for me to find it, but I encourage you to consider the implications of this way of attempting to communicate something this important.

I met James Raines in 2011 when we both participated in a writing workshop held by the People’s World (online) newspaper. The People’s World, the too often banal and arid grandchild of the Daily Worker, is the official newspaper of the Communist Party, USA. As active members, James and I had come to Chicago to learn how to write effective news stories that would give voice to the voiceless and help spur the cause of revolutionary change. James was unique among the few dozen gathered there. His spark lit a fire in me, his passion was undeniable, and his way with words was electrifying. He was the archetype revolutionary writer and activist.

Today that spark no longer sets fires. On January 5, 2015 James Raines committed suicide after being summarily dismissed from his position at the People’s World. Though unbelievable to those who knew him well, those of us who know the interworking of the Communist Party, USA and the People’s World editing staff, can understand what drove him to his terrible fate. But first, let me tell you about James.

James Raines talked the revolution talk, but walked it too. He was a long time union worker, a union organizer with the Communications Workers of America and a proud member of CWA’s Media Guild. He was also a scholar and sought to educate himself, not to make a buck at another’s expense, but to stop the vicious exploitation of a system he knew all too well. Rather than stay safe in academia, for which he would have no doubt excelled, James committed himself to the cause emancipating the working class through the overthrow of capitalism. He was also quick with a joke and able to quickly raise the spirits of an entire group. He was just what the proletariat needs.

In November of 2014 James was hired with the People’s World to be a labor beat reporter. Besides perhaps his family, getting that gig was one of his proudest accomplishments. He had strived to be an important part of the struggle with the party he believed was best poised to rally the working class to revolution. He was finally able to put his skills with language into form and assist in further organizing and raising the consciousness of his fellow workers. It was truly a dream come true. He was doing just what he wanted to do with the organization he believed in with every bone in his body.

James wrote on a myriad of topics for PW. From his first article about Occupy Saint Louis to Black Friday protests at Wal-Mart stores he showed his skill with every article. Eventually he was center stage for one of, if not the most, important news story of the decade – the protests in Ferguson over the shooting of Michael Brown and the non-prosecution of Officer Darren Wilson. James was in the thick of the protests in the minutes, hours and days after the Grand Jury decision was announced and provided what was, in my estimation, the single best article on Ferguson yet.

Though one must be careful to speak ill of the dead, James’ mistake was his misplaced belief in the CPUSA and the People’s World. Where once the CPUSA was the vanguard party of proletarian revolution – organizing black workers in the 1930’s, pressuring the Roosevelt administration to enact the New Deal during the depression by staging mass strikes and walk outs, and instrumental in the success of the Civil Rights movement (a credit that it is seldom given) – after the fall of the Soviet Union (for which the party received financial support), the infiltration by the FBI’s COINTEL program, and under the leadership of the Stalinist, Khmer Rouge supporting, partyphile Gus Hall, the CPUSA fell into decline. No longer could it claim to be the true representation of the working class.

This position was not assisted in the least by the next generation of party leaders after Hall. Led by Sam Webb, this group – which includes Terry Albano, Joe Sims, John Bachtell and others – has been the most ineffectual in the party’s history, even when it was constantly under attack from corporate media and the FBI. The leadership of the CPUSA in the labor and revolutionary movement is nearly completely lost. Seeing this – though not admitting it and unable to tap into the new revolutionary spirit of the next generation – the party faltered and has gone nowhere.

The only wind in the sails of the CPUSA was a new generation of revolutionary activists, whose experience was not framed by the Cold War, or influenced by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (recall the CPUSA was the basically the mouthpiece for the CPSU in America) but informed by their own experience in post-Cold War, neoliberal, globalized capitalism. For the most part this group had come to the struggle by their own accord, informed by the predation of 21st century capitalism, the seemingly endless spiral of debt from college education (for which they were told was necessary for “good jobs” – i.e. managerial positions), the lack of high paying jobs, and the calamity of the Great Recession. They were invigorated and energized, young and full of potential. But they were not allowed to lead.

The CPUSA, following the outdated structure of a mass party in Russia, split the party based on age – older members as full CPUSA members and younger comrades thrust into the Young Communist League or YCL. This separation was a slap in the face to the younger generation, who though appreciating what they could in the “revolutionary activity” of the leadership, were still constantly thwarted by the leaderships desire to maintain control over the party and its activities. James did his best to straddle this line, sometimes apologizing for the leadership while feeling great solidarity with its more youthful cadre. But nowhere was this stranglehold on power more apparent than at the editorial board of the People’s World.

After our training in 2011 where I first met James, we all went back home to reinvigorate the People’s World (which had recently been forced to go online-only due to its dwindling readership – mostly likely due to its lackluster content) and make it the voice of a new generation of revolutionary criticism. Sadly it was not to be. The editors, Susan Webb, Terry Albano and Joe Sims namely, continued their iron grip on the paper, forcing the experimental next generation into the small pinhole of liberal media, attempting to fashion the PW into something like the New York Times. Like the party platform itself, the People’s World was little more than a liberal sounding box, no real revolutionary zeal to find, but for the musings of one writer. That writer was James Raines.

When he was hired for the People’s World Albano and Sims told him that it was a permanent position. During the interview James told them he already had a ticket for his daughter to come for a once-a-year visit before Christmas. They took no issue with his request noting that family was important. While preparing his fantastic piece for PW James was on the front line in Ferguson, not simply as a journalist, which he surly was, but as the revolutionary activist he had always been.

As his wife Wendy stated to me, “He worked his ass off for them including getting tear gassed [in Ferguson].”

This was not enough for Albano or Sims.

Albano sent James’ Ferguson story back five times stating that it didn’t simply restate what was already being reported in the main stream press, which was apparently what she wanted. James was not one to merely regurgitate news that could be consumed anywhere, instead he wanted to explain what PW is supposed to present to its audience, a unique revolutionary perspective. Hypocritically, Albano, whose articles cover the revolutionary zeal of the likes of Robin Williams and Danny Glover, as well as the ever waste of bandwidth “Today in Labor History” articles, kept sending the article back saying it was just too different than what one could find on television and livestreams each night.

James’ Ferguson article, still retaining that revolutionary perspective, was finally published on December 16, 2014 but would sadly be his last. On Friday January 2nd, James, Ablano, and Sims held a video conference to set up a training event in Chicago like the one he and I had attended those years ago. Instead of constructively working together Albano and Sims took the opportunity to criticize James and his recent work. In the course of the discussion they told him, contrary to when he was hired in November, that his position had been “provisional” and was not going to continue. The pair refused to acknowledge their former recognition of important familial obligations stating that he had never told them about the unpaid vacation ahead of time. They further claimed, like a capitalist boss, that his previously approved vacation was simply “too long.” It is worth noting that from December 22nd, 2014 until January 2nd the PW staff, including Albano and Sims, were out of the office and unable to receive stories that James had been working on. Finally they fed him, again like any capitalist would, an excuse: he hadn’t turned in enough new stories. In reality he had published six stories since his hiring in mid-November, about one each week.

Up against the Communist Party fence, James pleaded with his aggressors. He told them he was willing to involve himself in any kind of training to be better and would do anything to remain in his dream job. Albano and Sims, with no remorse, rudely dismissed him saying simply, “no.” The tragic irony of this moment cannot be overstated: the editorial staff of the People’s World, the newspaper of the Communist Party of the United States treated James like every capitalist he had ever been forced to work for in the past. Instead of the revolutionary solidarity James expected, he was faced with a harsh reality: the Communist Party, USA is a best a fringe, liberal, ineffectual, power monopoly led by old, former-“revolutionaries” with little better to do than run their tiny online newspaper, write their books, and get their checks.

James’ job was never provisional, and there were no legitimate grounds for dismissing him in the manner, speed and heartlessness with which he was forced to endure, if any genuine reason whatsoever. Adding insult to injury, James had taken a pay cut to work for PW because he believed in the cause more than the money. He was a true revolutionary and the CPUSA – within a matter of minutes – destroyed him, dissolved any solidarity with his humanity, and quite simply broke his heart and shattered his will.

On January 5th, 2015, the tragedy that had befallen James and a fundamental component of his being was just too much for him to overcome. He simply could not bear the burden of that most unpleasant fact: the party had failed him, as it had me, and countless other revolutionaries. But instead of placing blame where it lies, with Terri Albano and Joe Sims, James blamed himself. He thought he had failed the party and could not live with the consequences.

But James was wrong; he had not failed the party. No, he had given it years of concerted time and effort, much of it without pay. Instead it was the CPUSA, the YCL, and PW that failed him, their members, writers, readers, activists and all those that may have become involved in the struggle. The CPUSA in its disgraceful actions including what they did to James, shows that it has also failed itself and the proletarian class it claims to serve. They have shot themselves in the foot, in the leg, in the stomach and now their heart, but while the CPUSA limps along, James is dead. The Communist Party of the United States (and its leadership, specifically Terry Albano and Joe Sims) are responsible for his death.

And not a word on People’s World.

Therefore, I encourage the members of the YCL, CPUSA and PW to expel and strip Albano and Sims of their editorial positions (something I doubt they will do), and turn in their own membership cards. If you believe in the struggle, in the cause for which James committed his life, now is the time to act. The leadership of People’s World, and therefore the CPUSA has James’ blood on their hands and it is up to you to stop them. You have nothing to lose but your chains!

In Solidarity with James Raines and the cause for which he gave the full measure of his life,

Kevin Gustafson

Proud former-member of the YCL

Your mind wandered as a brief pause in our conversation settled in. We were driving back from a town you knew well, and one I’d come to know as much. The car drifted into the lane beside us, the one reserved for those headed the opposite way. I too looked out the window, letting my mind ponder the sheer time the trees in the distance had seen, and how we have so little of it to experience. I noticed a car approaching, and figured you did too. But it came closer, inching ever nearer to our fate. Finally I broke your wandering mind and you reacted with the speed of a man half your age. I yelled just one word, “Grandpa!”

We were safe. I cast no blame, your mind was restless like mine, your desires bigger than the world you resided in. The ability to keep yourself latched to the moment without looking far ahead was an affliction, if you could call it that, which I shared with you. It was not the first time you had made a mistake, and tried to correct it. Thankfully, it was successful, a consequence not often enough for you, I know. It didn’t matter just then, we laughed about it the rest of the ride home.

There are few people in the world you can disagree with vehemently, but respect with the same vigor. You were one of those for me. Our worlds were different, time had passed, wars fought, nations destroyed, governments toppled and replaced. Money was, for some, easier to come by, a struggle had settled into passing the rewards forward to the next generations. It was I who received your check, written with years of toil, mistake and attempted reparations. We were different, but shared not only genetic material, but mindfulness, appreciation for nuance and irony, as well as the undeniable desire to always be victorious in argument.

We battled; hard. We disagreed and yelled, hurled insults and consternation, but could always break the stalemate with a joke, or an ironic twist of fate. That was us, two fighters for truth, whose paths had meandered far away only to come rushing back in glorious collisions. I reveled in the chance to be honest with an elder, to contest the “wisdom” that was attained over years of strife, and to put them to the test of the modern world. You, in return, loved to tease the impressionable, stab holes in our multi-colored coat, and impart indelible truths gleaned from a lifetime of engagement with humanity.

Then there is music, the great bridge of generations. Though the form diverse, the tempo was always fast, a reflection of how we viewed life. You, like I, ensured that it continued and in right time. It was us who, though branded with white skin still retained rhythm, made sure the band was grounded and allowed to stretch its legs. When I sit each time before my instrument I will take a moment and remember all the times you too sat in your own stool, providing the basis for everything else. From now on, you will have to take a seat next to me, for it is my turn to take on the whole burden.

One last thing we share I cannot leave unsaid. I too have stared at the empty bottom of bottles, wondering why its contents had only provided part of what they formerly had. Though I recalled countless wonderful memories with the drink, they had receded far from the present and only served to send my insides swirling. It’s a lesson that came too hard or too late for you, but it’s one, though unspoken, you have helped me to learn. I will raise a glass to you today, the last day that allowed your mind to continue exploring, but I will also put it down. It is that quality which is, really, a greater tribute to your legacy.

So with this ode I say farewell, though you won’t be far. Not hoisted high above, or sent careening down below, instead your place will be with me, taking a seat for a performance or holding my hand as we wander into introspection or utopian dreams. I won’t forget you, or what you’ve taught me. I won’t forget your desire for truth or your belly laugh at irony’s greatest follies. You were my grandpa, and were your own until the dawn began breaking this morning, but now you’ve gone and are left to reside in all those who remain etched by your genes and blessed by your ever adventurous spirit and incorrigible mind. Thank you for everything, I won’t forget you.

White Priviledge

Posted: September 23, 2014 in Uncategorized, Writing

Here’s my only issue with all the discussion of white privilege. Let me first say I acknowledge the phenomenon and it’s obvious outcroppings. My issue is that the phenomenon can be draped in classic identity politics, i.e. race and gender, but that is really just masking the true underlying problem: class inequality. When you look at it from a Marxist rather than a liberal view (class over identity) you get much more out of it. Blacks and women are paid less and have a harder time because they are poor at higher rates than privileged classes. Wealthy black people don’t have near the issues of black people as a whole.

The other issue, which is more generalizable, is this. Okay so I have educated myself as the last comic suggested. Now what to do about it? This where liberals and proponents of identity politics fail. For them the issue stops at recognition. “This is how our messed up society just works.” There are no explanation as to why (which would upset liberals) or ways to actually confront and change this social ill.

This is why liberals get nowhere. They complain about issues which are worthy of elucidation and examination but that’s were they end. This alienates working class people who are spending enough time dealing with the aftermath so as they lack the requisite time and energy to study philosophy, critical theory or feminism. It shoots itself in the foot because it is usually spouted from well to do or upper middle class (mostly white) liberals with – as they see it – nothing better to do than whine about social ills the never actually experience.

So I’m left holding the bag with nothing but guilt and anger which, as capitalism is so wonderful at doing, I can alleviate by distractions. Go youtube.


Posted: July 25, 2014 in Poetry

Not just waves wash away
Footprints in the sand
The slow creep, not today
No, it came in fast

From the blue horizon
Only distant dots in sight
From above then it came
To continue the fight

A football blown clear
Rolled lightly into water
Untouched by the blast
Singing silent honors

The air around etched
With the stench of death
Laughs led to screams
Out of nowhere it seemed

But we know, don’t we all
A star etched in a deck
But both of them believe
In the angel of death

There not only in dreams



The Farm

Posted: July 24, 2014 in Poetry

Rays of sunlight pierce through the cracks of the barn creating a checkerboard design on the expansive lawn of the turn of the century farmhouse nestled among fields of soy, corn and wheat stretching as far as one can see in each direction. Each winter the fall’s condensation seeps into the cracks between the boards, freezing and pushing them apart with the persistence and patience of a continental plate, moving just a few centimeters each season. Ever widening gaps grow larger each year as do the rows of sunlight on the grass, allowing patches to grow a little faster where it hits. The overgrown trees, neglected for decades, shroud most of the lawn in shade, and keep the spring rain from reaching the sward causing an even more discordant lawn, with patches grown over and others nearly bare.

We all just called it “The Farm.” Settled outside a village so small there show no population tally under the only sign which announced its presence to those who passed. The farm was a place to escape the city – to look out upon the sea of olive green or light brown and admire the process that brings food to local stores which otherwise goes completely unnoticed. Grandpa lived in the old farmhouse alone. Although nearing the age of 80, he still stood tall with a wide grin and a growing belly. He tended a decent sized garden at the edge of the property, the harvests of which he was particularly proud. He never mentioned being lonely, but it was evidenced by the look on his face when the first visitors would arrive for our family gatherings and the small drop of the head as we pulled from the long driveway.

The farm was a place to escape the limitations and monotony of modern life – time slowed and the world lost its numbing complexity, there were no computers or tablets to distract; phones lost the signals beamed from towers too far to reach us. Those of us who had nearly forgotten a world outside screens and skyscrapers were suddenly forced to find a way to entertain ourselves. Our curiosity, usually curbed by the infinite information at our fingertips, was allowed, even demanded, to roam free and pull our bodies with it. We explored the terrain, climbed trees, built forts; we waged epic battles in our small Ardennes and herded the sheep Grandpa kept for supplemental income making sure to put out of our minds their final fate, even as they eventually moved to fork from plate.

The barn, which long ago began the slow dip towards collapse, was kept upright by shear engineering prowess, fighting gravity and harsh winters but gradually losing its former glory. Still, it provided a myriad of means for young’uns to stay engaged. We found small spaces between the haystacks and ceiling, crawling from one end to the other with just enough room for our tiny frames to wiggle through. It was the hayloft that provided the most fun, though. The large beams which made up the frame of the barn stood fortified in cement and attached to each wall, making a perfect balancing beam which we all eventually mastered.

Grandpa caught on to our fascination and rigged up ropes to climb, attached a ladder to the retaining beams allowing easy access to our gymnastic frolics. He shifted ropes and pulleys which formerly moved bales of hay around the loft to retrofit them into zip lines, carrying droves of children from one end of the barn to the other. While a horribly unsafe endeavor, the barn itself dangling dangerously close to catastrophic ruin, none of us were ever hurt badly. There was a spill here and there, but nothing a Band-Aid and Grandpa’s comfort couldn’t treat with ease.

Over the years the barn fell silent, no children echoing its spaces with oration and laughter. We had grown up, more interested in other advantages visits to The Farm provided. Grandpa’s refrigerators were always stocked with beer, vodka, tonic water and food – all cheap products purchased from discount stores or duty free at the nearest Air National Guard base situated just an hour away. Every once and a while, with beers in hand and lit cigarettes in our mouths, we would peer into the barn and track is slide towards earth. The bravest among us still willing to take the risk to gaze upon the former playing grounds, losing themselves in a flood of nostalgic nervousness complimented by the potential fatal accident one strong gust of wind away.

Grandpa still fared well over those years. His belly grew a bit and his face wrinkled more, a small patch of skin hung just slightly from his chin. Still relatively active, he tended his garden year after year, keeping the old farmhouse clean, but spending the majority of time in a warm basement seated in an old VA wheelchair, flipping channels between college football and Fox News. He kept his mind occupied, not wanting to replay the tumultuous events of his life. He had seen the best and worst of humanity – felt true love and real loss, gazed upon the dizzying world of the travelling circus and pulled salmon from the California seas. All but once he dodged surface to air missiles over Hanoi, and had to watch the North Vietnamese jungle come nearer and nearer as he floated towards its canopy. He felt the slight sting of high honors as they were pinned to his chest, saw the world flatten as his depth perception was taken from him and watched as his six young children grew, eventually bringing their own offspring to The Farm retirement afforded him.

He ignored the widespread bitterness old age tends to bring and chose, despite immense difficulty, to look on the bright side; to watch, like an astronaut floating hundreds of miles above the surface, as the world changed shape around him still keeping a keen eye on the horizon in front and behind him. A new generation reinvigorated the place; all carrying some of his genes and all attempting to live up to his familial reputation. It granted him a new lease on life, and gave a purpose often left unconsidered. For all of us he is the Colonel, the undisputed patriarch of a family which grows exponentially in size and touches each corner of the country, but ultimately lies in the old house situated on a small parcel of land nestled among the fields that feed us with a uneven lawn, beams of light winding through the cracks in the barn’s wooden walls which, like the man who occupies the home across the greensward, stands against the unshakable force of entropy remaining tall and proud.

Tour Song

Posted: October 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

Seeing America through the front window
its vast oceans of green spread out in each way
Its water is clear, blue, and green
its sky: blue, red and grey

All the people are the same
some great, some less; some all together lost
but there’s always somewhere in America
where they can find and be found
it teems with difference
yet we’re not really that different

And through the window
it seems as if there’s certainly something
just a little bit farther in the distance
Fields and forests, steel and sand
cut through by long stretches of concrete

People replace trees as the urban jungles near
with buildings reaching skyward
but the sullen lot below
gaze upward with a jealous grin
but don’t know where to go

There’s music though, in every place
we’re not only connected by interstate
its the same everywhere; the people, the sounds
its just the names on the streets and the name of the town

As we move along to the next stop on the list
I wonder what similarities I’ll see
and what I things I may notice
but I know it wont matter
because to me, you see,
we’re all in it…together