Ode to Happiness.

Middle class homes and graveyard in Birmingham, Alabama USA circa 1936. Courtesy of Library of Congress public domain phtographs.

You’ve escaped the best you can.  You wanted happy.  Happy.  Your life was sad and bad and cruel and cold.

So you grew to want happy happy happiness.  Along that road, your own culture and village and old ways were made to be stupid and old-fashioned and dumb and primitive.  So you grew to hold your own ways in contempt.  With loathing but with longing.  You remember with sadness and pain—ahhhhh the old ways of my grandmother and grandfather.  Oh well, life goes on.  You’ve learned to bury.

Let’s find and build a home!  Four walls, many separate rooms.  A car or two.  A fence to keep those “others” out.

Or perhaps you found a “commune,” with “like-minded” people who thought just like you.  Even though some of them molested you and entered you at night, you kept it secret in the name of the secret and not-so-secret wishes for happy happy happy.  It’s okay.  Bury those pains and dreams of those people.  They violated you.  They perhaps killed your sons and brothers and raped your mother and sisters.  You hold them in contempt.  Now they smile and they build you orphanages.

First they killed your parents.  Then they build your orphanages “for you” with a compassion.  It’s all over the news programs!  It must be true.  Our government and our leaders are compassionate and they want what’s best for us!  You wither in secret.  But outwardly you go to work everyday to do what everyone does.  Otherwise you would be homeless.

Happy.  You are happy.  You hold it superior.  If I cry you tell me I should see a therapist.  I cry for my ancestors and live with its weight.  Unlike you, perhaps, I cannot shake it off.  I come from their bodies and their struggle against their genocides.  And the superior people, privileged in their assimilation to privileged openings to technologies and banking and the hiding of their brutality in their loopholes and crevices of escape inside the laws they themselves write….create more suffering and blame it on my ancestors.  It is a weight.

Quit your crying they say.  I cry.  But I also rage.  Crying and rage move together to struggle for ethical concerns and meaningful democracies.  The Democracy that is the USA and Western Europe and Japan now, are a sham.  But everyone is now trying to escape.  Escape away from the unexamined actions that is their life.  Life.  Apparently we are all on our own.  Whatever we cry about is our own problem, even though the problems come from the socieities and the people assimilated closely to, and WANT TO ACCESS those escapes, those that want to move into the homes and have vacations.  And communes with like-minded unexamining.

Forget the dead.  Forget those destroyed by the machine that is now prevalent, disguised as happy happy happy.  Promising thing unfulfilled.  The most dangerous thing is our own minds, our own actions.  Especially when we congratulate ourselves.  Exploited, then made into disguising it as something not.

Then you tell us what to do.  You tell us the road to happiness.  Your happiness kills.  Your happiness is a history of lying and deception.  Your happiness is the amassing of resources that masks itself as providence, as mainstay, as supposed-to-be and supposed-to-not be–over and over and over.  Followers of happiness, never happy, just followers of promises that are unfulfilled.  I am happy, others should copy me–that’s what you say.  That is called “colonizer.”   Happiness is not my goal.  But you say it is.  Happy happy happiness.

Systems replaced by other systems.  Systems should be local and egalitarian.  This makes things messy.  You don’t want messy.  You want an order, a value system, an unexamined value system that continues to annihilate in the crevices that you have not thought through or care not to face.  Oh no, I’m not racist.  Oh no, I’m not heterosexist.  Oh no I’m a nice person, really.  The germs aren’t here.  Or perhaps you know that what you say disguises your real pain–your self-disgust, your disgust at your own culture.

The old ways are not promising either.  Babies with the bath-water.  Thrown, no CRUSHED away.  With glee and celebration like those after the Atomic bomb was dropped on Japan, or after the Malaria blankets were laid on the Native American children.  Oh but it’s for democracy, our great land.  Continual colonialism, disguised as:  “That’s that, it’s different from what I do.  I’m a good person.”

Who are you?  You say you’re happy.  Or you will be as soon as the others listen to what you have to say.  You know better. You are good.

You are happy happy happy.  House, children, cars, vacations, traveling into lands where people don’t want you or have been made to want you because it’s the only way your own government has made their lands–to be slaves to the tourists and foreigners.  See–they want me here, they need us.  That was made real, my friend.  It wasn’t an accident.  Open your eyes.  But all you care is that you’re happy and that happiness looks a certain way.   I get sick.

I don’t want your happiness.   I want life.

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