This Could Ruin Your Dinner
by Margaret Wyles

November 7, 1999 - Note from the Editor: Among the comments we received regarding our three-part story, Let 'em Eat Cake (thanks to all of you who responded to my request for comments), one reader, Margaret Wyles, wrote: "I particularly liked the line...melding of Goebbels and the Constitution. [...] I think Goebbels himself would be humbled to see what the neoliberal establishment has been able to accomplish, even among supposedly educated people who sip their cappuccino as they peruse The New York Times, imagining they have an enlightened view of politics. Imagining further, that they have an impact on their future, unaware they have surrendered whatever moral authority they might have had to be sifted out in the 'free market economy.'" As I thanked Ms. Wyles for her comments and prodded her, as I often do, to write for Swans, she kindly obliged and sent a poem with this foreword: "Here's a poem [that] was written in the throes of despair over the indifference and ignorance that seems to surround me, and, I hope, carries with it some of the power of that experience." It is powerful, indeed.

Margaret Wyles is working on a book with Christopher Black, a Toronto defence lawyer and a contributor to Swans. She lives in Humboldt County, Northern California.

Thousands of children starved this month in Iraq.
You supported sanctions with your silence.
I paid for them with my innocence.

Before you sip that wine,
Let me tell you of our victory over Russia.
They are starving and hopeless.
Mothers give away their children.
We buried a whole country.
Let's toast the corpse.

Have some coffee and dessert.
It's on the house.
Courtesy of the people of Chiapas, Guatemala, Nicaragua.
They traded their forests, their soil, their diamonds for Dallas,
Disneyland and McDonalds.

How were you to know?

I could tell you more.
But it would be a whisper
huddled in the cracks
of the deafening sound of entertainment news.

Eat, drink and turn up the volume.


Resources on the War in Yugoslavia and its Aftermath


Articles Published on Swans Regarding the War in Yugoslavia and its Aftermath

Published November 14, 1999
[Copyright]-[Archives]-[Main Page]