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The Labadie Booklets
SONGS r°HE SPOILED
BUBBLING WATERS THE LABADIE SHOP
Friend of Freedom
THE SOCIAL ATOM
Tho we philosophize as we will on the good
of the whole, That the pack is of more importance than the one,
That the mass is greater than the individual, That the majority should rule the minority, Yet the fa<5l stands out like a lone pine, on
the top of a hill on a desert plain That without the unit the mass could not be, Whereas the unit can stand alone, Is not absolutely dependent upon the mass. What has been can be again. Take the figure I out of mathematics and
the whole is naught. Take each individual apple out of a measure
and none remains. Take every person out of a group and
there is no group. Society is a means by which the individual
seeks security and growth. When the group fails in this purpose, Does not express the ego's urge for fuller
freedom, Does not obey the individual will, Does not meet his expe<5lations, Does not make it easier for him to earn a
better life than in isolation, Then dissolution comes;
He rows about it, breaks society up into its
original elements, And chaos comes again!
The atom cannot be crushed, cannot be stamped out, cannot be eliminated. The social unit may be disturbed, may bfc misplaced, be maltreated, be bruised and enslaved, But sooner or later it destroys its enemy. There is no wisdom in sawing next to the tree the limb that bears you.
Social upheavals, wars, strikes, robberies, murder—
Disturbances and crime from the bowels
of society— Are the individual expressing disapproval
of unsocial customs. You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours Binds the units into society! When this bond breaks co-operation ceases And each goes his way on his own hook. As a tree blasted by storms finds new
rootage and lives aneW, So society rent finds new potentialities in the individual and grows again.
LITTLE BITS OF PAVER
Little bits of paper Written on with pen Make a mighty people Slaves to daring men, Make them follow notions ()f the dead of long ago, Tho it bring them nothing But poverty and woe.
Little bits of paper Sealed with ruthless hands Ciive to haughty idlers Ownership of lands, Make quiescent people Sweat, produce and do All the useful labor, Enriching but the few.
Little bits of paper Put into a box Make the simple voters Proudly orthodox, While the real rulers Pull the cunning strings, Snickering the meanwhile At the antics of the "kings."
J .ittle bits of paper Given man and wife Makes the woman property All her fettered life. I le assumes to own her Body, soul and thot, As the piece of paper Says he does and ought.
Little bits of paper Keep us "easy marks'' Just so long as mankind To superstition harks; Little bits of paper By authority Rob the unsuspe&ing Of their liberty)
Land void of the usurper's ruth, Where insolence knows naught of sooth, Where freedom's sun is daily clouded And the joys of brown children shrouded By the gloom of foreign sway, A prison making of India.
Land where the alien thug and snob Its native people rule and rob, And tho they toil with patient mien Their net reward is lame and lean, As heavy taxes on them lay By strangers tricking India.
Land where the sweetest singers sing, Where wanton war has weakened wing, Where pleadings take the place of strife And gentle kindness aye is rife. Tho tyrants sow their grim dismay The mind is calm in India.
Wisdom says to know is power. This force is reaching its crucial hour, As every fact but brights the light That mental might makes for the right; And this is now the world's essay.-— The truth that guides in India.
The right is what produces joy,
And want and hunger but annoy,— The lesson learned from English rule, The heritage of the English school, By the dark-skinned folk in their survey Of things as they are in India.
But as a cloud that's heavy with bane-ful flood,
So big is Patience with wrath and blood, And woe to them who force the gate That holds the powers infuriate, As they who stand in freedom's way May get their due in India! September, 1921.
When picking out a leader
Don't be in any haste,
And even when you've got him
See that he's not misplaced,
As few men have the power
To resist temptation;
And when one is a leader
Then closer comes damnation.
Old Satan never tires
At his propaganda
To lead astray a leader
On his wide veranda,
Where cunningly he lures him
And shows the rich domain
That opens to his partisans
If they from right refrain.
With gracefully sweeping arm
He points the easy way;
In brilliant colors deftly paints
How double-dealings pay,
While smilingly he glosses o'er
At what a deadly cost, .
Nor shows while one seems gaining
The best results are lost.
'Tis well with all your trusting
To caution mix with it;
Make leader often show his hand
To satisfy your wit.
When picking out a leader Don't be in any haste, Nor watchfulness let wander Lest by him you're disgraced. But when you've got the right oik* Stick by thru thick and thin, Stand to his back like iron And see him battles win!
O workers of the world, unite! You've naught to lose but chains.
You've everything to win in sight: -Whate'er you get are gains.
Are you going to always grope In the darkest ignorance,
Without some vision, without hope, Meek slaves to arrogance ?
The birds that build their cozy nest Just do so for a home,
While you own naught wherein to -rest, Tho you build cot and dome.
The wopdchucks, skunks, and even snakes Have every one a hole,
But nowhere ujay you nurse your aches Beyond a landlord's toll.
And yet you brag of being lord O'er all the land and sea;
You claim that wealth is work's reward, You fauna's master be.
But nowhere may you earn your bread, Nowhere freedom you achieve,
For comfort nowhere may you tread Without the boss's leave !
O workers of the world, unite,
And use your dormant brains ! You have the right, you have the might To break your slavish chains!
O workers of the wide wide world,
Unite to smash your chains! Let rulers from their thrones be hurled To void your toilsome pains !
WATCH THE COURTS
As you value freedom, As you appreciate liberty, As you estimate the utility of your tongue. As vou consider the comforts and welfare
of your kind, As you love home and family and friend?
and country, 1 warn you, watch the courts!
The politician is the braggart and brawler
of the hustings, The common disturber of the peace, The bungling purloiner of your goods, And more times than not vou know him
liar and knave; Vou know his mask of lovalty to vou and
Is vhe trick of his trade, and you know the choice
'Twixt the one ami t'other is Hobson's, That he and t'other both are but shield To the coward -and sneak behind, Who merit yoicr alert watchfulness. Hut I warn you, watch the courts!
The coward and sneak behind are more
dangerous than their tools, Less manly than their emissaries, More un&ious than their accomplices,
Less boisterous than their pusillanimous pals;
They are the claws covered with fur,
The teeth of the trap to the bait,
The pitfalls covered with glamor and deceit,
The poisoned wells to the thirsty.
Sometimes we discover them before they harm us.
Tho they show their fangs and strike
We may stamp them out like poisonous snakes.
They are menace to our fields and factories:
They are disease come with pitiless ravage;
They are tempests and destruction come to our welfare.
Yet I warn you, watch the courts!
We have been urged to build barriers against the invasion of these I name;
We have been compelled to seek shelter from their enmity;
We have been influenced, enticed, decoyed, pursuaded
To guard ourselves against this horde of foes to the commonweal,
And to find refuge in the church, behind the laws, with the courts.
We were approached on our blind side and frightened with hell fire.
We were blinded with fear of the red flag
and promised relief in the law. We were lulled and lured to have faith in the courts
As we would rest our safety with the god of gods,
And when our love and loyalty were won, When pride and patriotism and devotion
filled our hearts with ardor Kvcn to the fertilizing in their defense the fields of carnage with our flesh and blood,
And mingled our mangled bodies with the mangled manhood of supposed enemies, We began to realize that the coward and
sneak held the rudder of state; We began to suspect the wind didn't blow
, right in the church; We felt more and more the unseen hand in
the law;— But we still had the courts! — Our friends, our protectors, our shields
against invasion! They were the anchors to our liberties, our
property, our happiness, And tho the storms raged about us in
blackened danger We could rest assured of safety.
But what is this?
Do we feci a giving away, a loosening of the grip at the bottom?
Are we at last in danger?
Have the coward and >neak unloosed the fastenings? »
Ah, there is a hurrying ol feet!
The life-boats are putting off!
The pirate crew have monopolized the boats and floats and are sailing awav!
Men and women and children are struggling in the waters of despair!
()ur anchors are failing us!
Brothers and sisters and comrades.
Lest the coward and sneak wholly succeed in their nefarious designs,
I WARN YOU, WATCH THE COURTS ! !
I low much depends upon your daily job! It is to you what wetness is to water; What water is to the sea; What seas are to the world; What the world is to life. Without it you are as a clock without a spring
That makes the wheels go round;
The hands to mark the never-ending time
As the lay of the land indicates which way
the waters flow So your job determines the course of your
life— Where you live, The schooling you get, The kind of house in which you live and
its location, What quality of clothes you wear, The nature of the food on your table, Who your neighbors and companions arc, Whom you will marry, What your amusements, Where you sit in church or theater, Your treatment in the courts, Whether you ride first class or on tbe
bumpers or steerage, Whether you own a Ford or a limosine. Your pay envelope tells the tale of your life to those who lend ear,
And the story's plot is determined by what is inside.
It is a fortune teller whose predictions are based on the inevitable.
How fraught, therefore, with risk to your life;
How hazardous to your welfare;
How threatening to your weal,
How likely to your woe,
To leave your job beyond your own control!
Who owns the job owns him who employs the job!
DISPOSING OF THE REDS
A government once started out
To crush a Red Idea, So put the lawsmith on the job
To kill it by decree; It published wide its drastic law
And widely was it read, While everywhere it was perused There grew a conscious Red.
£4Wow ! this won't do," the crushers cried;
"We'll use the rude police !" And so the bully boys in blue Were put on this caprice. They went around where this Idea Was wont to grow and spread, And soon as they became acquaint They nearly all turned Red.
The army then got stern command
v ^ C7
To shoot and stab it thru; But more they shot and more they stabbed
The more the darn thing grew. They then turned on the poison 4tgas,T?
With cannon lies 'twas fed; The soldier boys were smeaxed with blood Till mostly all were Red !
And then the spoilers tried their wit, Engaged their looting schemes,
When lo ! the Idea grew apace, Beyond the wildest dreams! Now every one began to scan
That which they hoped were dead, And when they clearly understood Each one became a Red.
This Red Idea became a flood
'Neath the Eastern red'ning sky, And in its more romantic view It pleased the soulfull eye, While all the countries flared aglearn
As near and far it sped, And westward like the sun it tinged
The world a rosy Red ! 12-1919
YE DOLLAR CHASERS
Ye cult of folly, Ye who gain by unrighteousness, As vultures-profit by the carnage of battle
and insist therefore that war is good, Know ye not ye chase but phantoms ? That the hundreds of thousands and millions
Appropriated to your unfitting rapacity Thru the folly and fear of the foolish; That your gewgaws, which gleam as the
glances of Satan; Your galaxys gay, whose gorgeous gowns
are warped and woofed With childhood crucified on a golden cross, "Whose brilliant colors are dyed with the
blood of babes, Whose softness is aching mother-hearts
capitalized in the nap; Your merry-making wines, which sparkle
with tears of woe; Your voluptuous diversions; Your gormandizing banquets; Your licentious orgies, Are but allurements with which wretchedness baits its victims ? If ye know not, then heed history's warnings and hedge in time in this game of grab.
Ye cult of insanity, Know ye not ye follow fancies? Ye are flies of the night tempted by golden
flames that singe and kill ? Know ye not 'tis a gainless game To play with the whited heat of illgot fortunes,
That dry the succulence from out your life
And leave you, ere your silvered age,
With hearts ot hammered brass,
With faces of wrinkled rawhide,
With nerves of aspen, leaves,
With stomachs rotted with glut,
With tempers of vitriol,
With iron knuckles in the haggard faces of
industry and the hope of freedom, And with their avenging hatred against you ?
Know ye not ye are led to disappointment, Where vexation, care and worry sit in state
and taunt you with failure ? Know ye not the further ye go in quest of
dollars unearned Ye burden yourselves with concern and
broken faiths and anxiety, And end at last in the delirium of vexatious wealth
That changes men into ogres?
Ye cult cf rashness, Know ye not ye go to destruction— That danger lies ever in wait for you ? That the dagger of the asssassin, the Derringer of the footpad, the bludgeon of the burglar, the bullet of the balked in the game of get,
the hatred of the want-desperate mob, the rage of the riot Lick their frothing jaws like hungry wolves
for the hour to lay ye low ? Know you not that these ringing dollars But toll the dying knell of your manliness— Your fairness, honesty, reftitude, uprightness;
Your dignity, chivalry^ veracity ? A loveless life is a corpse unburied, And so are ye sure the current coin in the realm of your ruthless heart is not love's counterfeit? That cupidity is not masquerading in love's
winning ways? Casts not your wealth a weird shadow of
doubt over the love professed for you? May it not be your wealth <ind not your
weening worth that's loved? May not your purse be more magnetic than
your personality ? Rash indeed are they who insolently swagger in the face of justice
And Iccr with drunken confidence at virtue and integrity !
Ye cult of delusion, Think not the'work-a-day world think not. Necessity sows seeds as lavishly as wintry
winds scatter snow flakes, And, to preclude the further growth of
your kind,-Experience will at last cull cockles like ye
from the harvest And destroy them, root, stock and seed ! Weeds grow only when they are permitted to grow.
Ye delude yourselves that the usury debauch can abide forever, That possession of illgot wealth makes men manly, majestic or mighty in wisdom, That the jingle of jaundiced coin can soften
the decree Of the Joiner Jew that a camel can crawl
thru a needle's eye As easily as a rich man can reach the realms
of Paradise. Can there be real joy for you here or hereafter ?
If your consciences are not dulled by crime Ghosts from untimely graves, hastened by
the game of your cruel chase, Must haunt you at the feet of your downy and gilded beds.
They must pillow your pampered heads With broken bones of broken manhood. They must surround you at your luxurious toilet
And mirror their wrongs as ye gaze in the glass.
They must scatter the germs of disease, Cultured in your murderous mills and
mines and fa<5tories, Into the reckless wines that drive you to
desperate deeds To win in the desperate game, Which in itself is crooked. They must be your partners at the dizzy dance.
They must smear witkj)oisonous grime
Your banquet bread which they mix with
illpaid hands. The refuse swept from your noble man-* sions—
Proud produces of people poorly paid— Into the reeking slums rots and rankles
with deadly things, And the wings of the winds give them lodgement again into your own households, Making heavy your hearts with leaden woe, Overwhelming you with the gloom of the tomb.
It is a madness born of silly cupidity and stupid greed
That makes men suffer and seek to deceive
Their nobler selves into the belief that it is joy!
Like a forest fire,
The flames of cupidity destroy that upon which they feed
And leave itself naught but whited ashes.
In truth and in fa<5t, what doth it profit men
If they gain the whole world and lose their own happiness ?
THE REVOLUTIONIST TO THE , POLITICIAN
And you, my politician friend, who gave you leave, I pray, to make my wishes to yours bend and me your warrants pay ?
You've made me think I could not live, without your statute books, which to the square no blessings give, but favor thieves and crooks.
But I know better now, my friend; your scheme has been found out. It is not hard to comprehend if one but looks about.
I want you now to let me be and mind your own affairs; repeal those laws that pester me, that trip my feet with snares.
Do not invade my liberty;—I ask for nothing more. I flout your claimed authority tho it be grim and hoar.
Too long have I with humble head bowed to your brutal sway! Too long have 1 begged leave in dread to earn a beggar's pay!
I now demand that off my neck you take your ruffian feet! I now propose your schemes to wreck, your plans to rob, defeat !
Where land's unused there will I go and build an humble cot, till virgin soil, my needfulls grow and boil a freeman's pot.
The moneylenders I'll taboo, the profit-mongers mar, I'll cut the preacher's revenue, the lawyers I'll disbar;
I'll reap my crops, do as I please, and treat my neighbors well, boycot the roughneck state's decrees and you may go to Jericho !
ALTRUIST OR NINNYHAMMER?
The servant, subjedi, henchman, servitor, dependent, menial^ employe, flunkey, footman, valet, gillie, cad, serf, vassal, slave, helot, bondsman, ryot, scullion, hireling, mercenary, puppet—
In short, the wage-worker.
Is your designation among these thotles* things ?
Those whose will is impotency;
Whose condu<5l is made to the order of a boss;
Whose movements are automatic;
Whose wishes are those of the cog in the wheel;
Who rest when the machine rests;
Who get relief as the wheels, when the noise is threatening or irksome;
Who are used as long as. they produce, operate, construct, fabricate, weave, forge, build, and are thrown on the junk pile when worn and rusted?
Who come here and go there as wrecks on the sea, where the breeze of the bosses blows ?
May you rest when you're weary, as the birds on the wing ?
Eat when you're hungry, as the kinc on the meadows ?
Drink when you're thirsty, as the fish in the sea ?
Play when you please, as the lambs on the green ?
Work when you will, as the wild woods things?
Who submits to presumption without protest;
Who meets authority with his hat off;
Who kisses the hand except in love;
Who works for wealth that neither warps nor woofs his own welfare;
Who has no claw for coercion, no fury for. fraudulence, no boot for hypocrisy;
Who prates patriotism for a land looted by landlords;
Who votes for vulgarity that robs him of the freedom to reap what he sows;
Who bows in superstitious reverence before clergy, crown or Croesus;
Who serves at command and sacks his own soul for sacrifice to spoliation
Have lessons of liberty to learn from the birds and the beasts and crawling and creeping and swimming things of earth.
Who among them make things but for use?
Who among them monopolize the source of their living ?
Who among them beg leave to earn food and shelter?
Who among them pay unwilling taxes to a class of clever clowns who assume to rule by right divine—or any other ••right" ?
Indeed, the hireling is altruist par excellence or ninnvhammer!
GETTING THEIR DUE
There is a bunch of people tfcat complains it is oppressed, -A% tho a. monster elephant By a mouse could be aggressed.
I am not wise with schooling, But some simple things I know: One is that ignoramuses To audacity bow low.
If you have the sand and sugar And assume the bandit bluff You can cow a band ot cowards And pull off the bandit stuff.
If the-m-asses stand the racket It shows a thing or two : They have no gufs, but gizzards, Or are getting what's their due !
1 KNOW I know it isn't nice at all To threat who do you wrong, Who would your fellowmen enthral And rob the toiling throng.
I know it isn't quite genteel To shake your angry fist At anyone whose iron heel Makes him antagonist*
I know it sounds quite awful bad To threat his brazen face Whose churlish conduct makes vou mad And heaps on you.disgrace.
I know it isn't kind to say That beggar, sponge or thief Is he who does not work his way, Who takes without your lief.
I know it isn't loyal quite To curse the government, To say the state's a parasite. The spoilers' instrument.
I know the forces of the state Are for the leeches' gain, That superstition counts it great And fools its graft maintain.
I know the state's a studied blind, As any scarecrow is, And but affrights the timid hind Who dares not claim what's his.
I know that ignoramus hands Uphold authority, That villainous and coward clans Abridge our liberty.
And so if Patience will not stay Until the light arrives I cannot blame if ere the day You strive to break your gyves.
If forces meet you with a club To beat your selfhood down Let them not meet a whining scrub, A spineless, cringing clown.
1 do not blame if storming jolts You use to break your chains— Keen lightning strokes and thunder
bolts— If but success obtains!
But, after all, there seems no need To turn to teeth and claws, As did the prehistoric breed To win their upward cause.
If but you're let to plead and print Whatever you have to say, To fling your flag to freedom's glint. Your colors to display;
If firmly, wisely you appeal To those who choose to list, Despite the bigots' stormy zeal, You'll win if you persist.
But lest you strike the vein of that That leads its flow to you There'll be no gain in ways you'tc wrot,
No harvest yet in view.
If force or fraud gain you your way. But Liberty is beat, You cannot hold your ill-got sway. In time you must retreat.
As nothing can be settled, friend.
That is not settled right,— Invasion but puts off the end
If Freedom's not in sight.
And Freedom says that none shall ow n What Nature gave to man, None shall possess what he's not grown,
Right Reason's simple plan;
And further says that everyone May go his fending way, Be it in work, in creed, in fun, ^ And none shall say hira nay !
That Mammon's press leads Toil awry, That pulpit friends are few, That politicians falsify Are fa<£ts that censure you.
T say to jou in language plain These things you ought to know , ' And from supporting them refrain, Your own straight row to hoe.
• •' • m •• » - ~ .
\ herd of swine lived in a woods Where nuts and roots were fat, Where mud was deep in which to lay. Hnd luxuries like that,
Hut Big Bore once got in his head The thot he'd save the hunt For things to eat, and longer lie In puddles cool, and grunt.
He had long tusks and savage teeth, Looked ugly, fierce and rude. And drove the milksops all away From places rich with food.
He round about him drew a line As far as he could see, Excluding those who would come in For roots they claimed were free.
The females of this special herd To which his fancy bent Were picked out for his lustful need?. To satisfy his vent.
Therefore he grew so rich and fat That he could hardly walk, But still kept on in mastership O'er simpleton and gawk.
The bright and bravest of the herd At last could not endure His impudence and- greediness. Which made life insecure;
And so they grunted and ihey squealed And raised a dreadful din, .While all his henchmen gnashed their teeth,
And squealed 'twas treason, sir) 1
At which the rebels, unafraid, More exasperated grew, And razed the "legal" flummeriV* ! Big Bore? Oh, him they slew !
WHO IS YOUR FOE?
To sneak upon an unknown man And wound him sorely if you can; To gouge his eyes with cruel thumb As you would pit a luscious plum; To jab a bayonet thru him, Vour glory filling to the brim; To scatter wide as autumn rains Some splendid fellow's cultured brains; Ah! these are what a warrior brave Would paths to glory gladly pave ! And this some folks call com me il faut The way to treat an assumed foe. Maybe it is if you could see With certainty your foe was he, And not rely on crowd or king To indicate that fearsome thing /That consciously has done you ill Sufficiently for you to kill.
DARE AND DO
Men of Labor, men of mind, Ye with man blood in your vein?, Ye who love your own and kind, Forge no more your galling chains!
in their faces stare the dastards Who would bind your hands with thong?.: Say to all the ruling bastards: u Rulership to none belongs! "
Tell them you shall never falter In your march to freedom's soil; That in aim you'll never palter To be masters of your toil!
Men of Labor, men of mettle,
Let no person govern you !
For his crimes make Mammon settle !
Block the bandit! Dare and* do !
TO YOU, MY COMRADES
To you, my comrades, I have a word or two:
Come within my reach,
Where I may feel your help and hear your
counselled word, Hut touch me not in guidance or restraint. Td have you as a co-worker in friendship's light,
Where each can see that his individuality
is more than dross, That it is the purest gold, without alloy; Hut don't bully me, even for my own good. As I'd rather be wrong and free, Responsible for my own deeds, Than subject to your will, Like a bull led about with a ring in his nose.
THE WORKER S WANTS
I want a shelter o'er my heat!
That truly is my own; I want a dreamless, downy bed;
To own the crops I've sown; I want a hearth to warm my greet,
A love to soothe my woes; 1 want to work, I want to eat, I want to wear good clothes; 1 want a job that's surely mine,
With quite all that is in it; I want a freedom that's divine,- -But bossing, I'm agin it !
1 know I can't get all these things
Unless I have the chance. As birds can't fly if they've no wings,
No more can I advance If I've no means with which to make
The thing that's in my mind, • And so I've dreamed with restless ache
Of how to void the grind, How get a place where I am free
To ply volition's will And not to beg, on bended knee. For leave to use my skill.
I know that every wholesome need
Can be supplied by work, And that the state, in Mammon greed t Has made the law "a dirk
With which the stealthy stab my will
And wound my worthy want, So I may not my needs fulfill,
My spirit leaving gaunt, I )ivorcing me from virgin soil
From which to feed my own; The weather's rage I may not foil. Nor homely ease enthrone.
The law's grim price must now be paid
For leave on earth to be, J ho Nature never toll has laid,
No charge for jobs makes she, Hut freely gives to every one
The chance to earn his keep, As well as play and have his fun—
The priceless fruit to reap. I hit human folly stands between
The worker and his job, His honest wages thus made lean. Meek victim of the snob.
I'm one who does some useful thin '
That meets some social need. And to the social ills 1 bring The medicine indeed: Pis Freedom, giving every one The chance to work and play. That brightens life, as does the sun, . To every welcome day.
1 want to live where every soul
Is honest, brave and true, Where life is one harmonious win And now it's up to you!
if everyone was just as good
As he knows how to he There'd be no need of gyves or jails. And we would all be free.
There'd be no need of courts or law*.
No churches, priests or pope, As what would be in store for us Would be as we would hope.
li every one would fail to do
What seems to him is wrong The world would be a paradise And life a silken song.
There'd be no need of locks or bars
To guard one's honest own, As nature's storehouse would be free For those to own who'd sown.
If vou would do no harm to me
And I no harm to you, What now is spent in wickedness Would good to both indue.
Then friendly freedom's faithful hands
Would liberate the thrall, And walling work fill plenty's horn, Enuf for each and all.
THE GRAFTER'S PLOT
When Busy town was yet quite small The landlord's graft was here. And business men and workingmen
Made lordly his career. They toiled and sweat and sweat and tailed
Like busy little ants, And made the landlord's pockets big
With privilege and grants.
The struggle for small bits of soil
On which to work and dwell Made rents go up and wages down.
Which clipped their breathing spell. The more they worked,the more they made
The more the landlord got. And all too blind is Toil to see
'Tis yet the grafter's plot !
It's hard to say just what to do
To satisfy the Torv crew. > * *
At first friend Labor is denied ' The rij/ht to work- his hands are tied
l>y Monopoly's decree. Despite kind Nature's guarantee < )f ample means for uselul.toil In sunshine, water, air and soil, Until the grasping Tory crew (iral)bed all the earth and products too.
And then, tho this wa'n'l enui. A law was made to treat him rough It he should dare to quit the job And thwart the Tory's might to rob, As when friend Labor stops to rest The Tory must take in his vest. Because his wine and bread and meat Ain't made bv artful laws' conceit.
Without friend Labor's sweat and tliot The Tory's weal soon come to naught, As "Tory" means to steal by stealth, And stealing ne'er produces wealth, As only Labor makes the things Consumed,from working folk to kings; Therefore who lives and does no work Is pauper, beggar, thief or shirk.
And none of these performs the good That every social atom should.
What Labor makes Labor should own, And nothing his who has not sown -The fish to him who wields the hook, And naught to either drone or crook. The Tory says it's his who gets And keeps by cunning,force or threats. As soon as Labor learns this claim He'll see how always he's been game To the presumptions Tory crowd The idling, grasping, ruthless, loud - -And take the Tory by the neck And of ['resumption make a wreck !
TO Till-: STRIKER
\\ hen will you learn to strike aright. In strike for what's worth while, it rush at once the parasite Who thrives or) bluff and guile?
Whv not at first between the eve*
Strike him a telling blow, \ud thus your strength eeonomi>e. ()n him his end bestow ?
"I is he who lives on usury. In all its blighting curse, \\ ho rubs you of your effortpay l o fill his peccant purse.
state s his friend, the law his tool. Grim government his shield, .And these are used to you befool' And rob you of your yield.
' When thoroly you know these facts And do as wise men do Your wisdom will be shown bv acts That make his Waterloo.
Conserve your strength, my striker friend,
Fill up your larder well, In all the land, from end to end, The hosts of unions swell:
Instill the spirit of revolt
Tnto the workers' ranks, And when befit, like thunder bull. Your foe strike front and flank*.
No dynamite, no shot or shell.
No instrument of death Need you your enemy to (juell.
Nor vet a waste of breath. »
With saintly smile just -top your work
And let curmudgeon stew. Just let him fuss and fume ami irk; But let him not 4'do" you.
Who lives on interest, profit, rent
Is Usurer per se. And he's the one to circumvent The striker's aim should be !
When will you learn to strike aright.
To strike for what's worth while, And crush at once the parasite
Who thrives on bluff and guile ? /
HOLD FAST TO FREEDOM
Hold last to freedom, what'er you do, \s 'tis to wellbeing what sunlight is to day. No teeming joy can come to wisdom an<f to wit
While rigid bigot hands with stern restraint
Prevent the easy flow of vour fated wish
l'o do what satisfy vour own offenseles> heart.
1 .el no worldly pelf make you the shadow
of another's will. Nor grow a weakling as a sprout in shade-Let no forbidding frown deter from that
which you've a human right to do. Let no command from some presuming church;
No law from rude enslaving state; No plea from fondest friend; No threat from fiercest foe; No prayer from father, mother, sister.
• brother; No suit from sweetheart, lover, wife or husband:
No bull from pope, prince or potentate Play bogey to your fenseless heart's desire. Hold fast to freedom, whatever you do, Else be a slave to everv passing whim !
WHO IS FREE?
fit1 is free who fulfills the law Without restraint from fellowmon; Who is not checked by terrors rav* Or problems of the how or when : Who goes about his daily life. In sunshine or in storm. Avoiding pain or useless strife, With love's own wistful heart conform Who keeps himself from every debt By giving what is due to all, He it in love or things by sweat Brought into being, great or small: Who follows where desires lead, When prompted by sweet Liberty, And not his fellows' rights impede. Nor serve Assumption's bold decree: Who to Ambition 's not enthralled. Nor yet to jealous love or hate Or friendship when by "Duty" called, Or what is not decreed by Fate. No one is free to do his will If it be not his fated doom. Necessity makes us fulfill Its iron law, tho hopes entomb. But keep within stern Nature's law. Obey with grace her wise decree: Your greatest good will show no tlaw And you'll be free as you can be.
TO JUDGE KELLER
(Whose injunction in miners1 strike cases in West Virginia, in 1902, practically forbade giving food or help of any kind to the miners Or their families.)
What! Not to feed the hungry?
Not to defend the defenseless?
Not to extend a succoring hand to those struggling in the quicksands of industrial wrong?
Man, are you mad,
That you think I shall obey,
Like a coward spaniel,
A decree, the fulfillment of which would make me
Meaner than the beasts of the jungle,
Less kindly than the vultures who carry carrion to the helpless young,
More loathsome than the vipers that crawl on their bellies?
You creature of evil;
You parrot prater of palsied precedents;
.You man made in the image of greed;
You scarecrow set up to frighten the timid;
Think you the world, like Joshua's sun, stands still.
And has not moved, lo! these thousands of years ?
Think you that man, the real man, he of heart, of mind, of progress, of justice;
The grown and growing man; The man of righteousness; The man with red blood in his veins; The man whom the gleaming years have
made conscious of self-interest Beyond the evolving mind of eocenic time; The humane man; the Christly man; The man full of tears for the sorrowful, Full of pity for the unfortunate, Full of love for his fellows, Full of compassion for the erring, Full of hope for the wicked, Full of admiration for those who spurn the
dictates of the powers of darkness; Think you he will heed your injunctions When they blight those heartful impulses Which make the weetiing world kin f Not on your life ! Not on your masters' lives! Not on the life of all the iniquitous corpor ations,
In whose baneful interests your sinful words
were uttered, Wittingly or unwittingly. Of his meagerness he will give freely, And with it graciously and gracefully will
go goodwill. In his uncorrupted simplicity he sees no crime in helpfulness,
No aggression in relieving the pangs of hunger,
No invasion in insisting upon his own. He will not be ruled by grinning skeletons
of the ruthless past; And the law that guides his condu<5l Must not be brought to light by rummaging Thru the tomes of dark and bloody times And given vitality because forgetfulness
failed to burn them When they ceased to be bearable. Make no attempt to graft dead branches
upon living trees And then expe& sustaining fruit.
The weft and warp of moral sensibilities Toughen resentment to ancient prejudices That bar the way to equal freedom. If need be new wine can be put in old bottles,
And if the old laws must needs rule us Then not to insult fresh and more mature , Conceptions of righteousness Is to interpret them in the new And more searching light of modern days.
They stand before the 1 Employment*' office With blanch and haggard faces stamped with despair. They have come early. They go away late.
It's a long wait to the words: "Go to work ! "
Over the hills not far away Lie fallow fields, virgin soils, vivid forests In idleness.
Potentialities beckon who idly stand before the "Em
ployment" office. Mines and mills and forests call the wealthmakers Who stand stupidly before the office that does not employ.
In the.palaces on the verdant hills; In the brook-ribboned loveliness of the vales; In the lolling groves scintillating with luxury & laughter, lave Idleness that own the idle mines and mills and fields. The fence between the idle rich and the idle poor!
Oh, Idleness! Oh, Unemployment!
t>h, Poverty and Enslavement and Rotting Riches! When will you see the reason for the Idle Rich and the Poor that are Idle ?
SALVE EOR THE SORE SLOTS
Received y<»ur poems. which I deem most excellent. Ilave enjo\\ (I reading them. Mai ion Todd, novelist <\; oralrix.
Fiii very ^ 1 a<I to have your p.) 'in *AYhat i^ Love." h is line ;i!i«! full of the highe-t s-.-ntiment. I shall value il. • (.'hnse S. ( )>born. ex-governor of Michigan.
I have ju-t read your " Little Bits ol Paper " in The Public with threat pleasure. It always pleases me to read
your contributions......John B. Andrews, with American
Bureau of Industrial Research.
Having read and re-read your poem of " Hubert the Hunter'" I wish to tell you how much I enjoyed it. It expresses both the spiritual and material man well, and speaks the simple truth of spirit which animates all living things.- - Hazel Moran, of the Cam]) Eire Girls.
Thank you for the little books and cards containing your verses. My criticism of them i- that they are good because they express real feeling. You have succeeded in putting your experience into words, and right words at that. "What is Love" is unusually good and satisfying.—Tom Lacev, Boston.
In looking over some of Moses Harmon's books I came across a choice little volume ol yours, "What is Love?", and I am writingTo inquire if I can get one, as I like the sentiments expressed so much? Love is such a universally misunderstood-word that it is very refreshing to have it defined —your way ! - Flora W. Fox, Los Angeles,I al.
Your vurse is surely sane and healthy, and you engage life from a normal viewpoint. Your "Mother Earth," "Good Health" and "Sweetheart True" are clever conceits: and I am particularly pleased with "Free Peace on Earth," a sensible addition of a very light-making word. Your art as a versifier and your printing art are marching together, and both improving with the flight of the days.— Sheridan Ford, poet and art critic.
The little poem "My Loves" recalls the dear old "Cranky Notions," tor one time you were discussing how a man could spend Sunday, and you then expressed your love for the green grass, rapid-running water and the good things of prodigal mother nature. That paragraph frequently occurs to me when I take my walks abroad.-Win. B. I'rescott, ex-president of the International Typographical Union.
"What is Love" has the elemental reality of life in it. and stands reading better than vocal expression, which certainiv can't be said of all poetrv. When von were reading it at the meeting [of the Michigan Authors' Association] I could not help thinking of Cray's "mute, inglorious Miltons," circumscribed by birth, training and all life circumstances. But in spite of all a flash of glory bursts out and shows the fullness and quality of spiritual potentialities.—David C. Nimmo, poet.
"What is Love" strikes me as the best thing I've seen of yours. The line in it that now sticks out in my memory is that in which you explain why you wanted your feminine friends and chums. I don't know how anybody can beat the shipwrecked mariner text: It closes the argument at once, and gives the verdidl to the de-fen dent. You will see that I do not refer to you as the plaintiff.—Allan Benson, one time candidate for president of the U. S. on the Socialist ticket, journalist and author of several books 011 sociology.
I note the tone of modesty iti your letter, which is al ways an indication of a sensitive nature. I think you are too modest in calling your poems simply "verses," as they have every mark of real poems. The thot is deep, the emotion is easily felt, while the originality is one of the delightful characteristics of real poetry. The heartiness of your poems is a fine portrait of yourself. They also show a very keen appreciation of the beauties of na ture, and you have voiced some fine sentiments and ex pressed them beautifully.—Wm. Edgar Brown, poet and preacher.
President Metealt has asked me to answer vour ex-
tremely interesting letter with its enclosure of a poem entitled '-Myself/' which reminds us all of the great poet Walt Whitman. * * * I want to thank you for vour
"Hubert the Hunter." I have read this poem with much interest, and think the descriptive portions, where in vou describe your brother, are most excellent. "Keen .is a blade of marsh hay" struck a very deep chord in me. I know just what this means, as I have cut myself on such a blade. At one time, when I was in my teens, I waded many of the marshes in southern Michigan collecting the e^gsof water birds —bitterns,coots, gallinules, etc.—Win. B. McCourtie, secretary Home Correspond ent School, Springfield, Mass.
I've been reading your poems all over again; not all your poems, of course, because we are not so rich as to have them all, but those vou sent us. They are fine, are a delight. * * * Your "Little Hits of Paper" tells the truth in a terse and taking way. Many will remember those lines and think of the subjeCt treated when they would quickly pass them l>v or forget them if fra/.ed in prose.
"Tho old the thot, and oft exprest, It's his at last who says it best. '' Yes, your verses are fine, and the sentiment ju-t the thing for the occasion—for all occasions in fact. Those 1 have seen in recent numbers of The Public are excellent and cheering—or else thot-producing, which is sometimes better than mere cheer-inspiring. A band can cheer and enthuse us, but it seldom makes us think much, while your verses often carry a long line of thot which leads the reasoner into the open road of freedom and real human fellowship.—W. W. Catlin, Seattle.
"Hubert the Hunter," another real poem, came with your good letter this morning. Many thanks for your consideration and gift. Your personality and your merits have endeared you to many admirers. 1 am glad that some of them respond in a financial way, for, after
all that's said and done, the miserable exchange medium mu^t come to us in our alleged civilized Male or we perish, in so far as the (le>h i> loncerued. * * * Your philosophy ard your kindly suggestions are excellent.
1 am glad the verse book reached you, and to know that it please-* you. Il is a small equivalent in return for the many nice poems you have giv-.m me. You have accomplished much and done rhe world great good. Few poets are honored w ith translations of their poem* into foreign languages. Your poems appeal to our universal brotherhood and to the best that is common to all, hence language does not remain a barrier to their influence. I congratulate you on your good work.--Win. 1). Totten, poet and lawyer, Seattle.
FROM THE PUBLIC LIBRARIAN.
The Public Library, Detroit, Mich. My Dear Mr. Labadic:
Thanks for your remembering me with a 1910 calendar. The verses are all right. They do credit alike to your head and heart. I have long been aware of vohf philanthropic sentiments, but it is pleasant to be once more assured of them. Sincerely yours,
ilKSRY M. l-TI.KY.
Dear Jo - Many thanks for poem "Watch the Courts." It's great, and will appear in an early issue of the Appeal—the next without doubt. With love and regards,—Warren, (Jirard, Kas., June 1st, 1911.
Your poem "If I But Could" comes constantly to mind in connection with the street ear strike. We have troops of soldiers and hosts of special policemen here for the last months trying to keep the peace between disputants w ho see only the immediate effects of the deep defects at the foundations of society.—I). A. Roberts, Columbus, O.
Your Booklets are very good, and I have delighted in reading them. — IL F. Shopf, Gilroy, Cal.
I )ear Comrade Lahadie 'I he pii-tty little bo«>k- are to hand today. ! thank you. * * You are d«>ing well, excellently well. Thc^e leather covered things are all that could he desired. 1 sat down and read "What Love?" and did not let up until twa-doue. and -ay, Ld rather have written that thing than heroine rich in taci The sentim<nt as well a* the jingle is all there. Your 4\\ Word W ith Vmi, My hear" is worthy of a Ku-kin. I don't care who says nay. I speak l«»r myself, and dare to right out in meeting or otherwise. I he-e verse* arc. replete with "thots that breathe and words that burn." Your huinanitarianiMn crop- out on every page. Haste the time w hen lose\* the ba»e of every busiue—. I lenrv
llool, Ithaca. N. Y.
1 >ear Comrade I have received tin: litlle book (What i- Love?J on the big -ubject. and I -end you my thanks lor the gitt and the comradely inscription. < hie of the finest things in the bum h of'goodness is the bit of pto-e at the beginning. The clear simplicity of word and -entiment is like a New Kngland brook - refreshing aim iov-giving. All we who love silute and thank you.
In the lirst tine poem I greet especially the words to vour comrade the big, sim*. sweet ideal of love. Th«. everv man and woman Hashes his crystal to cateli Irom
-^me new radiant angle the color- ot love's big sun we * an have never too many love poems, as life can never be too full of love. Hut we need above all to see its colors in the revolutionary prism, and so you and \\ alt Whit man and juM a few others give the very best ot the revo-lution -revolutionary love. Thank you, comrade, f<>< letting me see the dash. Maud Thompson, Ann Arbor.
Dear Mr. Lahadie-—The hour is now 12 p. m. For the last two hours I have been reading your attitude lowards life in your verses. To me they impart the thot thut. i.t is the easiest thing in the world to love the man who wrote them. Those ideas! They're gripping,and -o human ami humane. - liar net Ceorgc Hravrrmao, cartoonist, Detroit, 1-23-1911.
Dear Comrade Jo—-Thank you ever so much for your pretty booklets, so artistic and beautiful. Have just read them. Some dam good things in 'cm, too. What fun you must have. And so, with love and blessings, ever yours faithfully, Bruce Calvert, editor the Open Road, Pigeon-Roost-in-the-Woods, Indiana.
My Dear Jo—A thousand thanks for the booklets and
the gems they contain and the inscriptions in vour own »* » i *
good hand, which give them priceless value! I shall enjoy them all and cherish them as loving souvenirs of your valued comradeship. * * Love to you, and all good greetings and all kind wishes. Yours always, Ku gene V. Debs.
Your poetry is rotten. —A.L.B.
Next to Charles Kdward Russell I deem Mr. Labadie the best revolutionary poet in this country. He always says something, and much of it is said beautifully.- Dr.
Charley Russell can't write poetry at all. — A. B.
Do not do to others what you would not have done to you by others.— Confucius.
Do unto others what you would have others do unto you.—Jesus. The world is my country, to do good my religion.—Thomas Paine. Law has always been wrong. Government is the fundamental ism of the soldier, bigot and priest.—Wendell Phillips.
The Labadie Booklets:
What is Love and Other Fancies; The Red Flag & Other Verses; Doggerel for the Under Dog; I Welcome Disorder; Workshop Rimes; My Song of S«tlf; Essays; and-so-forth. These Booklets are printed in very limited numbers, are not for sale in the stores, but sent to those who want them at their own price. The work is done by the family, — type set by hand in the old-fashioned way: printed on an old Washington priss, and we bind them at our leisure, in the Shop at Bubbling Waters, in the wilderness, one mile north of Orand River Road, on the Oakland-Livingston counties line. 35 miles from Detroit.
The Shop is intended to demonstrate cooperation without the loss of personal responsibility, the weakness in all co-operative enterprises heretofore attempted for industrial or commercial purposes. What is everybody's business is done efficiently by nobody. This is why even democracy in polities always fails to perform social functions to the advantage of society in general. Politicians bear no economic loss for their inefficiencies. The Labadie Shop bids for your support only when it does the job that suits you. The taxes are voluntary. See the point? The price of each booklet is what you want to contribute to the support of this modest little enterprise.
No dun is sent anybody. Unless a book
is ordered no contribution is expected. So lar the income has been ample, the individual favors ranging from a few cents to hundreds of dollars. Do you want to co-operator ?
P. O. Address: Wixom, Mich.,K.l). 1, (during the summer); and 2306 Buchanan St.,
Detroit. Mich., II. S. A.
i in: <;kkat i kar
Unless llit: means he owns eompletc A?i<i thus ilependenee foils, 'I here is a fear that ilogs tin* feet
(>t rvrrv one whotoiU
A hungry \\• »ll that <talksal>ati With toamiii^. snapping jaw>. Ili- pieivin^ eye> a^leam with < rati Ami sharp hi* erueleia\v>.
I his 141 iun-t t<Mr U always near, Ahaunting a^ a iHiome
That spoil* his inanline>^ aini \iin tt Ami threaten* l»rea<l at h«»me.
II he Ik- lirave and >tan«U runi, As tils a freeman's f«»nn.
The stern proprietor?* object. Aithreat with fearsome simm !
WHAT AND WllKKK
Altruist or Ninnyhammer, 29 Disposing of the Reds, 19 Dare and 1)0,40 Getting Their 1 )ue, 32 Hold Kast to Freedom. 51 1 Know, 33
H',45 India, 7
I at tie Bits of Paper, 5 Presumption's Wreck, 47 Salve lor the Sore Spots. 57 The Bore, 37 The Grafter's Plot, 4<> The Leader, 9
The Revolutionist to the Politician, 27 The Social Atom, 3 The Unemployed, 56 The Worker's Wants, 42 To Judge Keller, 53 To the Striker, 49 To You, My Comrades. 41
Watch the Courts, n
Who is Free?, 52 Who is Your Foe?, 30 Workers, Unite, 11 Ye 1 )ollar Chasers, 21 Your Job, 17