I give thanks with humility to Barb’s life partner, Mary Ellen Broderick, for allowing me to be a part of Barb’s “Celebration of Life.” Barb’s baby, the Democracy for New Mexico blog, is still up and running thanks to Mary Ellen and is still the biggest platform for progressive political commentary and analysis in New Mexico.
Championfor Barbara Rose Wold - by hakim bellamy
I’m not going to start off By calling her a “Champion”
Not because she wouldn’t like it Though she probably wouldn’t But because it would in accurate
She was The person Who put the winners In check
I don’t know If they yet have a word for that Person
So from here on out That person will forever more Be referred to as “Barb”
Barb? Movements don’t need Champions Until it’s over
What they need Are fighters For when shit is on
The need lighters For when it’s dark Because the places Where those who would do us harm Like to do business Could use a little sunshine
Like we do When it’s raining percentage points From the Dow The Sun of Sam And We the People Are the sacrifice they make To the only god they know
But Barb? You tried to tell them That they were following the wrong Tao That we’ve never seen money worship people Only the other way around
You tried to tell us, Barb? That we can’t fix this Great Depression Lying down Even though it’s STILL raining Euros in London Cats and dogs in Albuquerque Bears and bulls on Wall Street And asses and pachyderms in D.C. Puddling Pooling money
Like water for Elephants
You tried, Barb. Tried to remind us to write poems like this Cover stories that matter And write blogs like fists
In the airwaves
Like a champ Like we can be our own Like we know
That it IS The election, itself That separates the people from their candidate That they will promise us the world If we deliver them the state That the campaign is like the first date And the middle of the second term Like our 20th anniversary You reminded us That one day Our winners will call us whiners
From the school of “You must doing SOMETHING right If the Right Wing extremist don’t like you!?” And you shared that me on more than one occasion So I guess that makes me the pupil Cause I’m just like you
And they’ll ask Why am I talking to you NOW, Barb?
To take on the responsibility Of giving this many people Voice You had to be One hell of a listener
And at times It seemed like The only thing bigger Than your heart (And the slightly larger sleeve That you ironed it onto) Was your ear
And even From where your body rests now I’m certain you can hear us Better than some of the people we live with The incumbents we get stuck with The people WE picked
The uncontested and the untrusted That get to run unopposed Cause WE ain’t running You’re ears worked better Than every last one of’em
From City Hall to Santa Fe From Washington, D.C. to Santa Fe
And they can’t believe the shit we live with
As New Mexican Workers Labor Natives Asians Brown, Black And differently-abled
As poor whites And Occupationists Who’ve made Occupying our Occupation
As children Immigrants Women Veterans Lesbian Bi, Transgender Queer, straight and Gay men. AMEN!
And you lived it.
Can’t speak to us anymore From that side of the finished line But you can still Make us feel Like someone is listening to us
Barb! I won’t Call you a champion But I’ll call you Soon.
(c) Hakim Bellamy January 12th, 2012
In loving memory of Barbara Rose Wold (May 5, 1948 - December 18, 2011) First performed publicly at “A Celebration of Barbara Rose Wold’s Life at the United Association of Plumbers and Steamfitters Union Hall on January 12, 2012.