Big Bridge #10

An Open Letter to America


Judith Malina & Hanon Reznikov


Why the Living Theatre Is Returning to New York

because the people in charge haven't got a clue
because we're all tired of waiting
because we deserve better
because we're all fallen angels and we're on our way home
because it's all so boring
because it's too easy for us in Europe
because this is where we grew up
because we want to recapture New York from the Americans
because sex is coming back
because there isn't a lot of time left
because we need new peace strategies to foil the bloodthirsty bastards
because it's cold outside
because the winds are blowing hard
because earth is about to shake off the human species like a bad cold
because civilization is still a new idea
because Americans believe that anything is possible
because New York is it, man
because of the estuary
because of the little paper cup of coleslaw they serve with the sandwich
because of al sharpton
because of george bush
because we are still vulnerable
because regime change begins at home
because the europeans think they know it all, anyway
because no man is an island, but Manhattan is
because the west side rules
because of slaughter on tenth avenue
because we have to
because all the secrets are out
because we feel guilty about being away so much of the time
because nobody should be president
because some knuckleheads have given anarchists a bad name
because it's expensive, darling
because we want to make it so hot
because midtown needs a not-so-temporary autonomous zone
because the republican convention will be a few blocks away
because millions ride unchallenged underground
because we've been around so long no one remembers
because the revolution isn't a movie that was shown in 1968
because the beautiful nonviolent anarchist revolution needs a new york chapter
because the i.w.w. needs a new meeting place
because the poets always have a home with us
because for us, it's all music
because the whole thing is a dance
because political isn't enough
because the spiritual is so difficult
because as far as anybody can tell, god is absent
because satan is lurking in every invoice
because the angels are tired of los angeles
because there's no time like the present
because of Hiroshima, still
because my grandparents were killed by a hit-and-run driver on Neptune Avenue
because people think nothing really matters
because the suspense is driving us crazy
because it's a no-win situation
because God expects it of us
because we have sinned
because repentance isn't enough
because we know thousands of wonderful people in New York and three in Rocchetta Ligure
because the Morgan Library is closed until 2006
because it's hard to really care about the movies
because of magnetic forces
because psychology is not what it's really all about
because Marx was right about a lot of things
because if we didn't exist, they would have to invent us
because otherwise . . .
because Brooklyn was annexed against its will
because Staten Island is another matter
because the World Trade Center is gone
because we're all suspects
because Allen's dead, and Kenneth, too
because Anne Waldman lives, and Jackson MacLow
because the Statue of Liberty is still French
because America is lying to itself again
because not even a three-party system will save us
because of the real estate interests
because of the improvements
because we are making a life for ourselves
because women have almost figured it out
because gay is queer like us
because no one knows where to put the garbage
because the cats are talking to the dogs
because in heaven they teach you to gamble
because there is no straight path
because metaphors can be lethal
because experiment is difficult and decision dangerous
because of the protection racket
because we have a home in the genome
because we're all dying to make a living
because the score is tied
because the end is unknown
because of all the human energy
because of the movement in the streets
because the UN replaced a slaughterhouse
because of the chatter
because we're in trouble
we're back