Originally Published: November 3, 2004
The wind herds the leaves in pointless circles, stealing the warmth of orange and yellow and depositing brown mummified flesh into the gutters.
Ragged Halloween decorations sway and clatter, grinning skeletons spilling crepe paper innards cleave to lampposts. The sidewalks are slippery with shattered pumpkins, their candles toppled, their faces kicked in.
The sky squints, grey and gloating and old.
Acres of blue-haired ladies clutched their Grand Old sample ballots, looking them over.
Ranks of Grand Old white men stood with set jaws, eyes front in fear, staying the course.
Seventeen percent in 2000.
Heaven and earth moved in courtship. They danced and rocked and stroked and promised.
Seventeen percent in 2004.
Class, what do we learn from this? Hey, are you there? Were you ever there, or did the excitement die once the music stopped. Is it true what the grown-ups say about you, about your attention span and your fickle allegiance? Will you forever let the seventeen percent speak for you? Will you ever really rock and roll?
Where were you? What occupied your time yesterday instead of standing up for yourself?
Whatever it was, it wasn’t enough. It wasn’t enough to stay seated. Not this time.
Rights of marriage. Rights of choice. Rights of uniqueness. No rights left untouched. Back! Back in the closet, down the alley, into the cellar!
From my Cold, Dead, Hands.
We were so close to home, young and old. Now there are miles to go.
Ohio. Ohio. Ohio.