THE MERCHANTS OF MENACE
Dr. Lester CN Simon
And it came to pass in the land where the sea rolls gently onto 365 inlets, a din rose up upon the utterance of St. Michael. For in Parliament he spoke as bespoke a man seeing within and seeing without. Lo, there can be no greater speech than when an orator espies himself in the words and syntax he hurls at others. For is it not written by the famed author, P.D. James, in paraphrase, that St. Michael was incapable of passing a mirror without that moment of narcissistic stillness?
Verily, the callers to the wireless Observer, the Voice of the People, were rent asunder. And yet, divided, they rejoiced in measure for measure in their own division. In one camp they hoisted the message and ignored the messenger. In the other camp they observed the obverse. Woe be onto a people who cannot see two sides (let alone all) of one subject or object with their two eyes.
Behold, the days of rejoicing and reckoning cometh after we the people wondered in our own wilderness for 28 years. For it is written that there shall be no rejoicing without due reckoning. But alas; some of my dear good people are short of sight and shorter yet of memory. For in the new dispensation they have not yet come to understand how the victory over the 28 years of wilderness was won. It is as if many of them have become but vegans and know not the meaning of a pound of flesh. And yet, some do say, quietly and in camera, that they do know that a pound of flesh must be taken but, “for crying out loud”, without the drawing of such a large moiety of national blood.
How silly and simple are those who know not that the enemy is best defeated by its own ways and means. So now they rant and rave and misbehave because they truly believe that all the glamour and all the glitter for all the campaign came out of the barren sky and not from the golden coffers of men like unto the one whose place was (and some say, still is) on the road to the first, old town of Parham.
And the children of schools gaily said that St. Michael laced heavily into the Honourable Member of Rural East with darts of vigour and shards of pepper and vinegar that would make Susie proud. Nay, he was neither courteous nor curt in the court of Parliament. And he pushed and pulled and tugged and swayed him all over, even to the far off land of Italy. For he said the people wanted to know the role of the good, merchant Senator in the Italian debt forgiveness, and if more pounds of national flesh would be forfeited as in the softness in the hard rocks at Bendals.
And even though the loan and forgiveness bond with Italy had been spoken to many times before, as many times as the travels of Marco Polo, the tirade was ravenous and juicy to the rapacious crowd. So that when those who had gathered wrongly assumed an ebb and break in the tide, St. Michael roared and soared again and waxed lyrically and mercilessly into the potted holes of the man who was once in the lion’s den. This he did with gnashing teeth and weeping willow, pouncing upon him as children were wont to do in “dolly ketch a man”. Little Sally Walker, sitting in a saucer. Rise Sally, rise. Wipe your weeping eyes. Turn to the east, Sally. Turn to the west, Sally. Turn to the APUA that Sally loves the best.
And when it was all over and the people had laughed their bellies full and joyfully cried their eyes dry over the vocal massacre, the Tax Collector spoke softly and gentlemanly. Whencesoever, he wondered loudly, St. Michael could have so much stomach (wherefrom did he not lose some), stamina and gumption and be so boldfaced as if the hardest thing was to know. Yea, the time for combat had not yet come. For a wise warrior knows when to strike and when not to strike. Thus the people look forward to the second coming of the combatants in political Armageddon with Power Point, hardware and all in the lower house on the hill.
Who amongst them in our Parliament will come to us and speak of true forgiveness and mercy. “The quality of mercy is not strained” because it requires no force. “It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven” for it is the very quality of God himself. Verily, verily, we mortals are closest to God when we temper justice with mercy. But mercy and forgiveness for national wrongs cannot be offered lightly and unknowingly. If the princes of light have forgiven their named princes of darkness, that offer of forgiveness must be in the sunlight and not in the shade of a tent.
Forgiveness comes easily, much too easily in this blessed, Christian land. For when forgiveness is too freely had, there is but little or no point in doing right. This land will never be at peace until true forgiveness is as transparent as the dazzling sunshine. True forgiveness is much more than ceasing forbidden actions, regretting wrongdoing, confessing through Jesus before God and resolving never to repeat those actions. This entire Christian act is simple and easy.
True forgiveness for wronging the nation demands that you make it up to the nation. If you stole from the nation, you must return the stolen treasure. If you caused national pain you must placate the nationals (and non-nationals, in English ) to achieve true forgiveness. Wherefore was this laughing dagger dragged across our throats with sounding brass and tinkling cymbals in our Parliament? Was this the Day of Atonement and reconciliation offered to us in cheap, finger-pointing and khus-khus perfumed talk?
If forgiveness and mercy have been proffered by deed or by default so that wanton speeches make vulgar mockery of us all, the people must be told; for true national forgiveness is a public act. Or henceforth, in this land where the people hunger and thirst for righteousness, all politicians on all sides, in the lower and upper houses and in no houses at all shall be branded forever and ever as merchants of menace, unfit to be heard, unfit to be seen and totally and decidedly unfit to rule over us. Rise Sally, rise!