Friday, April 6, 2007

The People, Yes

From The People, Yes (1936) of Carl Sandburg

"...The people is Everyman, everybody.
Everybody is you and me and all the others.
What everybody says is what we all say.
And what is it we all say?

Where did we get these languages?
Why is your baby-talk deep in your blood?
What is the cling of the tongue
To what it heard with its mother-milk?

They cross on the ether now.
They travel on high frequencies
Over the border-lines and barriers
Of mountain ranges and oceans.
When shall we all speak the same language?
And do we want to have all the same language?
Are we learning a few great signs and passwords?

Over the ether crash the languages.
And the people listen.
As on the plain of Howdeehow they listen.
They want to hear.

Two countries with two flags
are nevertheless one land, one blood, one people--
can this be so?
And the earth belongs to the family of man?
can this be so?..."