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Provide, provide!

Wednesday, 7 December, 2011

“Infusing his speech with the type of language that has emerged in the Occupy protests, President Obama on Tuesday delivered his most pointed appeal yet for using taxes and regulations to level the economic playing field.” That’s what the New York Times tells readers in “Obama Strikes Populist Chord With Speech on G.O.P. Turf“. Typically, clownish media around the world ran with the story.

It would be no harm if the president, for once, tried to level the economic playing field by actually empowering people to provide for themselves and their families. As a politician, however, he is more interested in rhetoric than realism. Which brings us to Provide, provide! by Robert Frost. “Make the whole stock exchange your own! / If need be occupy a throne”, is the perfect couplet for the populist.

Provide, provide!

The witch that came (the withered hag)
To wash the steps with pail and rag
Was once the beauty Abishag,

The picture pride of Hollywood.
Too many fall from great and good
For you to doubt the likelihood.

Die early and avoid the fate.
Or if predestined to die late,
Make up your mind to die in state.

Make the whole stock exchange your own!
If need be occupy a throne,
Where nobody can call you crone.

Some have relied on what they knew,
Others on being simply true.
What worked for them might work for you.

No memory of having starred
Atones for later disregard
Or keeps the end from being hard.

Better to go down dignified
With boughten friendship at your side
Than none at all. Provide, provide!

Robert Frost (1874 —1963)

In 1885 when Robert Frost was 11, his father died of tuberculosis, leaving the family with just $8. In 1894 he sold his first poem, “My Butterfly: An Elegy”, to the New York Independent for $15. After Frost’s mother died of cancer in 1900, he wrote poems, delivered newspapers and worked in a factory as a lightbulb filament changer to make ends meet. He provided.


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