Continuing the study of words and music of Gil Scott-Heron, the following is from Notes from First Minute of a New Day, written in 1975. These words are eerily pertinent to the present times, not just in their perfect analogy to Wall Street cannibals devouring their own, but also in their strident call for self sufficiency and family unity as a source of strength. In 1972, Scott-Heron wrote, "We do not need more legislation or more liberals. What we need is more self-love and self-respect. By every means necessary!" It seems clear that the revolution of change that Scott-Heron refers to has little to do with government assistance, and I'm certain his world view was/is for the most part based on a general distrust of government.(To say the least!) I would love to know how he would edit or change these notes if he were writing them today.

"There is a revolution going on in America/the World; a change as swift as blackening skies when the rains come, as fresh and clear as the air after the rain. We need change.

The seeds of this revolution were planted hundreds of years ago; in slave ships, in cotton fields, in tepees, in the souls of brave men. The seeds were watered, nurtured and bloom now in our hands as we rock our babies.

It is mid-winter in America; a man made season of shattered dreams and shocked citizens, fumbling and frustrated beneath the crush of greed of corporate monsters and economic manipulators gone wild. There are bitter winds born in the knowledge of secret plans hatched by Western Money Men that backfired and grew out of control to eat its own.

We must support ourselves and stand fast together even as pressure disperses our enemies and bangs at our doors. No one can do everything, but everyone can do something. We must all do what we can for each other to weather this blizzard.

Now more than ever all the family must be together, to comfort, to protect, to guide, to survive because... there is a revolution going on in America/the World."


from Now and Then... The Poems of Gil Scott-Heron
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