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A Monologue
A Monologue
04/16/09 at 11:54 AM by AbsoluteINK
Author's Note: I've been taking an English class that is all about cities and their effects upon their citizens and the literature their citizens write, and also listening to a lot of Godspeed! You Black Emperor, and this was the result. Enjoy.

A Monologue
Louis Kearny

This city is a machine.

It runs constantly, taking in those who move within its boundaries, naively thinking that the city is a place of infinite opportunity, that within the urban jungle they will find something new and exciting, that they will find themselves and do something great (what is it about cities that gives people these visions of grandeur, anyway? Is it the enormous skyscrapers rising up on either side of them as they walk the streets? Is it the sheer size of them, the number of people walking the streets who at least look like have done something with their lives?); these are the people the machine takes in, and before they know it they have been chewed up, stripped of everything they call their own, processed, and spat back out onto the pavement, where they join the crowds and wander aimlessly, filling a role that was given to them by the city: the high-powered businessman, yelling importantly into his cell phone, briefcase swinging from his hand; the bum who accosts you every day as you walk by, lusting after the money in your wallet; the street performers for whom you harbor a secret admiration, but yet you are never willing to give them any money; the prostitutes who you shun in broad daylight, but at night you find your mind wandering down those same dark streets that they inhabit; the corrupt politicians; the street preachers, with their signs and their prophecies; the immigrants, who believe that somehow within the hugeness of a city, they can carve their own identity, make a niche of their own....everyone who enters the city, whether they want to or not, fills a role that was designated by the city, and are there because the city needs them to be, because they are necessary for the machine to keep running.

I came to this city ten years ago, lured, like so many others, by the prospect of a job, of money, of opportunity; however, after ten years all I see is violence, degradation, and decay. I see ghettos, I see the crowds of homeless people who huddle in doorways, in parks, in alleyways, but somehow go unnoticed; I see corruption and despair.

I no longer see people walking these streets, I see crowds of puppets, being manipulated by strings they cannot see.

I know I am not the only one who sees things the way they are. I know I am not the only one whose eyes are open to the horror that surrounds us.

This city does not care about your dreams, or your life experience, or your reasons for wandering into its grasp. The machine does not understand that you are more than just fuel to keep it running.

It doesn't think, it just takes, and takes, and takes.

And we give, and give, and give.

I know I am not the only one who sees things the way they are. I know I am not the only one whose eyes are open to the horror that surrounds us.

To those of you out there who are in agreement with me, and I know that you are out there: your eyes are open, your ears are open, now open your mouths and say something! Go out and do something! Don't just be one of them, one of the wandering, aimless crowd! Show the world that you made it out of this machine with your identity intact! Show the others that they can too! This machine has run perfectly for far too long; go out and clog its gears!

You will be persecuted; you will be shunned; but I know that you are strong and you will do what has to be done!


"We are caught in the belly of this horrible machine, and the machine is bleeding to death."
-"The Dead Flag Blues", by Godspeed You! Black Emperor
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