The Conquering Masses

Here I was back in my room. I decided I could use a break from writing and so I went for a drive.

I headed downtown to get a taste of the polluted city air and parked in front of a shop. I didn’t feel like driving anymore and fancied walking down the streets instead.

It was mid-day and that usually meant one thing: busy people crawling up and down the streets and walking down the sidewalks everywhere I looked. People of all ages with unfamiliar faces that somehow seemed familiar enough to me.

But there was something different about these people – something unusual that sparked my attention and made me take a closer look at each of their passing faces.

These people were different from the common folks and bystanders I used to come across in the rare times I chose to stroll down some crowded place in some part of the country. These people weren’t scared. They wore suffering yet brave faces. And I feel the need to specify this since I am used to seeing random people walking up and down random streets and observing their faces: scared, cowardly faces weakened by life and circumstances.

People have become the slaves of their government, the beaten dogs of their masters, the servants of rich and filthy kings. That is a truth they can no longer escape from – and none of them wishes to hide it any longer. They have written it on their faces, carved it between their eyes and wore it shamefully on their foreheads each time they have chosen to take to the streets to go to work or come back home.

They are sad folks, they are humiliated folks, they are angry folks, they are desperate folks. People who have been robbed of their work, their money, their pride, their dignity, their dreams, their hope. People who are forced to answer to a dictatorship in disguise.

Democracy is just another form of hidden anarchy. Governments are just another cover-up for thievery and corruption. They have always held the people by their throats, threatening to slice them open in case they didn’t conform and depriving them of any form of right and freedom whenever they did.

But today – today was a different day. The people didn’t look as pessimistic or desperate, they didn’t look as reckless or suicidal. I could tell because I too am one of them – I too am one of the people who carry their frustration on their shoulders and walk around with it trying to make it in this difficult world.

So you can imagine how it hit me when I saw these people walking – almost strutting even – with an air of defiance and determination on their faces.

Even their walk was different: usually you would see them walking aimlessly, wandering around with no fixed direction or purpose, lacking motivation and drive. But today, this batch of random people was walking like soldiers in a file. They weren’t chaotic, their steps were rhythmical, there was power in their soles, their chests were puffed and they had perfect posture and balance. It was akin to a synchronized movement – almost rehearsed – and the fire in their eyes only accentuated the verve in their march.

These people wanted something – they were looking to reclaim what had been stolen from them, take back what’s theirs and regain what they had lost.

As they walked past me, I felt the blazing fire burning in their souls. They were like a flock of phoenixes that had risen from the ashes, were rid of the weight they had been carrying in their previous lives and burned brighter than ever.

I felt their power swallowing me as they moved along. I felt weak and frail compared to them. But I hung on and watched them pass by me one by one. With the added intimidation their eyes provided there was a renewed sense of hope and belief: belief in something new, in something bigger, in something brighter. They were all united under one banner, allies chasing a common goal.

As these veterans emptied the streets and I got sucked back into my mundane life there was a change in me. I didn’t look back to watch where the people were going. But somehow, I knew they were heading toward the same place. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow – but someday. A day will come when they will all walk together and take the world by storm. Take what’s become of it and rebuild an empire where only ruins remain.

Yes, they will bring back the time of the people, the time where we all lived like kings, without distinction or favoritism or segregation. They will bring back the time of the rich and riches of man and land. They will vanquish all that is evil and vile on this earth and restore parity and justice in the barren lands of death and despair.

They will erase all that is dysfunctional and restore order.

There will be no more poor children running the streets and highways, skipping between cars and speeding vehicles to get to the other side and ask the rushing workers trying to make it to their miserable jobs for a few breadcrumbs or some money.

There will be no more people driving themselves to sickness because they can’t pay their bills or afford a place to live.

There will be no more deaths in front of hospitals that refuse to treat those who cannot afford their treatment.

There will be no more crimes, no more robberies to provide food and shelter for those who are unable to work or find a job.

There will be no more nights spent in the dark because of power outages, or dehydrated souls left to rot on apartment floors because of insufficient water supplies.

There will be no more emigrating hopefuls who are unable to fit their inflated dreams in the closing spaces of a diminishing country whose alleys get stacked with unemployed youth.

There will be no more answering to greedy superiors who bathe in money and rub their feet in gold while being served gourmet meals on a ship’s deck.

No, these times are over. They already look like ancient history.

It seems that the masses have awoken – the people have risen from their deep slumber. And their eyes speak for their souls and they cry out a single word: REVOLUTION.