ALMOST HALF A CENTURY SINCE CHE'S MURDER...


Humanity’s Misery for Sale

by: Cheryl L. Daytec

The compradors imprecated your fiery rhetoric
Scorning avarice that empties famine’s belly

Indicting  thirst  that lusts after  plebeian  sweat
Yes, even enslaved blood from  chocked veins

You drew lines of parity - no rich, no poor
Just humanity  eating  from the same plate

To each based on penury; from each, on gift
You preached that one’s  labor must liberate

The precariat  from  helotry to  Wall Street
On that cruel day, one hundred souls vanished

By the ruthless hands of the butler of greed
Korda’s camera arrested your pain and rage

Framed between a silhouette and a palm tree
Now frozen for the world to see… everywhere

To those who heard the clarion call, it is the face
Of  deep love for the masses who are also oneself

The face that speaks indignation  against  injustice
Against oligarchs bestriding  borders as fictions of law  

To reach last frontiers beneath the feet of first peoples
The  gold fever afflicting them does not come down

They eat  what they steal, and get even  hungrier
As their bursting patrician pockets get deeper

To the naïve and nescient, a movie icon’s face
Or, perhaps, a heavy metal band’s sex symbol

In thoughtful contemplation of the next show
To capital, nothing is sacred; even God is cash

Comrade Che, you would not believe me if  I say
Today, I saw your face on T-shirts and bikinis

Offered at  altars of the golden calf on high streets
Of Bangkok, of Manila, of London, of San Salvador

Of New York, of Sidney, of Beijing, of  Pretoria
Your enemy keeps the contours of your face  alive

Flouting the fire and  faith that resided in your soul
A cursed  thief  to sell humanity’s desolate visage
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