A Trump rally in an old poem: ‘Crowd is cheering, seriously without thought’

by Rashmee

Posted on June 6, 2016



trump rallyWhat is it about Donald Trump and huge rallies?

The Republican Party’s presumptive nominee likes them. He believes they are the perfect setting for his enormous appeal, showcasing his popularity among thousands of cheering Americans.

Mostly though, Mr Trump’s rally-fests seem to degenerate into anger-expression sessions – they find targets within the gathering (such as the media) or spit murderous fury at the world outside the venue. Sometimes, they draw equally disgraceful violence from those who don’t support Mr Trump’s ideas and public statements. The anti-Trump violence in San Jose was a terrible and indefensible response to the Republican candidate’s race-baiting xenophobia. Violence is not the answer to anything.

Anyway, this poem, ‘The crowd at the ball game’, by one of the late great modern American poets William Carlos Williams, seems to explain something of the nature of Mr Trump’s rallies.

Especially these lines:

The crowd at the ball game 

is moved uniformly 

by a spirit of uselessness 

which delights them— 

And again:

It is alive, venomous 

it smiles grimly 

And yet again:

It is summer, it is the solstice 

the crowd is 

cheering, the crowd is laughing 

in detail 

permanently, seriously 

without thought

(Full disclosure: Williams, who worked as a doctor for more than 40 years in his New Jersey hometown of Rutherford, may not even be considered “American” by Donald Trump. After all, Williams’s father was English and his Puerto Rican mother had French, Dutch, Spanish, and Jewish ancestry. Mr Trump has said that the Indiana-born-and-bred Judge Curiel is “Mexican” simply because his parents are of Mexican blood.)

The crowd at the ball game

by William Carlos Williams

The crowd at the ball game 

is moved uniformly 

by a spirit of uselessness 

which delights them— 

all the exciting detail 

of the chase 

and the escape, the error 

the flash of genius— 

all to no end save beauty 

the eternal— 

So in detail they, the crowd, 

are beautiful 

for this 

to be warned against 

saluted and defied— 

It is alive, venomous 

it smiles grimly 

its words cut— 

The flashy female with her 

mother, gets it— 

The Jew gets it straight— it 

is deadly, terrifying— 

It is the Inquisition, the 

Revolution 

It is beauty itself 

that lives 

day by day in them 

idly— 

This is 

the power of their faces 

It is summer, it is the solstice 

the crowd is 

cheering, the crowd is laughing 

in detail 

permanently, seriously 

without thought

 


Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK

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