Aleteia

I am the people—the mob—the crowd—the mass.

LOUISA GOULIAMAKI/AFP
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Photo of the Day, February 8, 2017

I am the people—the mob—the crowd—the mass.
Do you know that all the great work of the world is done
through me?
I am the workingman, the inventor, the maker of the world’s
food and clothes.
I am the audience that witnesses history. The Napoleons come
from me and the Lincolns. They die. And then I send forth
more Napoleons and Lincolns.
I am the seed ground. I am a prairie that will stand for
much plowing. Terrible storms pass over me. I forget. The best
of me is sucked out and wasted. I forget. Everything but
Death comes to me and makes me work and give up what I
have. And I forget.
Sometimes I growl, shake myself and spatter a few red drops
for history to remember. Then—I forget.
When I, the People, learn to remember, when I, the People,
use the lessons of yesterday and no longer forget who
robbed me last year, who played me for a fool—then there
will be no speaker in all the world say the name: “The
People,” with any fleck of a sneer in his voice or any far-off smile of derision.
The mob—the crowd—the mass—will arrive then.
— Carl Sandburg

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