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The Day They Set Jim Larkin Free

Black 47
Language: English


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In due dischi compilativi dei Black 47, “Elvis Murphy's Green Suede Shoes” del 2005 e “Rise Up: The Political Songs” del 2014.

Elvis Murphy's Green Suede Shoes
Rise Up: The Political Songs

Su queste pagine abbiamo già incontrato James Larkin (1876-1947), combattivo sindacalista irlandese.
Fu uno dei leader del “Frithdhúnadh Mór Baile-Átha-Cliath”, il “Dublin Lock-Out”, il grande sciopero per il diritto all’organizzazione sindacale che paralizzò l’Irlanda dall’agosto del 1913 al gennaio del 1914 quando la repressione poliziesca (che causò almeno quattro morti, uno dei quali – il dirigente sindacale Michael Byrne – picchiato a morte sul cellulare in cui era stato rinchiuso), il crumiraggio e la fame spinsero la maggioranza dei lavoratori a tornare alle fabbriche.



Jim Larkin decise di cambiare aria per un po’, ma anche negli USA riuscì a mettersi subito nei guai: aderì all’IWW, si fece espellere dal partito socialista per via del suo entusiastico sostegno alla Rivoluzione bolscevica, poi si fece sbattere a Sing Sing per qualche anno come “criminale anarchico” (erano quelli gli anni giusti) e infine espellere dal paese.




Sotto la sua statua a Dublino c’è questa iscrizione in francese, gaelico e inglese:

“Les grands ne sont grands que parce que nous sommes à genoux: Levons-nous.
Ní uasal aon uasal ach sinne bheith íseal: Éirímis.
The great appear great because we are on our knees: Let us rise”
I see what is, I see the way things should be
They made a mistake sending me to jail
Made a worse one setting me free

I see what is, I see the way things should be
Those scabs will regret the day
They set Jim Larkin free.

The sun is blazing, morning’s here
But no light in our eyes
Nothing but fear and apprehension
And their lies
Then down the lane, the big man strides
A force of nature unleashed
And all our doubts dissipate before him
As we follow his lead

I see what is, I see the way things should be
They made a mistake sending me to jail
Made a worse one setting me free

Look up at the stars, throw the light into dark places
You can’t see the heavens above
When you’re down there on your knees

Go on nail me for treason - arrest me for conspiracy
But I know it’s no crime to desire
That my people should be free

‘cause I see what is, I see the way things should be
Those scabs will regret the day
They set Jim Larkin free.

The stars are bleeding, night has come
The city sleeps in tears
Nothing to cling to but each other
Tomorrow, the same fears
The sound of voices in the distance
Messiah is close at hand
Rise up, rise up, my poor afflicted
You too can taste the promised land

I see what is, I see the way things should be
They made a mistake sending me to jail
Made a worse one setting me free

Look up at the stars, throw the light into dark places
You can’t see the heavens above
When you’re down there on your knees

Go on nail me for treason - arrest me for conspiracy
But I know it’s no crime to desire
That my people should be free

‘cause I see what is, I see the way things should be
Those scabs will regret the day
They set Jim Larkin free

Contributed by Bernart Bartleby - 2014/10/13 - 16:12



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