O but what country can progress,

Without a monument to its leaders?

One that fits the size of their egos,

One that exceeds the scale of their ambitions,

One that history will remember as indispensable. 

That monument is essential. We just don’t know it yet.

A monument, they say,

For the good of the nation,

For the pride of our people,

For the beauty of our capital,

For the future of our democracy. 

Ah. A new temple for our democracy, they say.

Those who govern us then, perhaps our deities.

So a larger pulpit and a more lavish abode, 

Who would think it not vital? 

That new bungalow is essential. We just don’t know it yet.

This starry night, I sit in admiration at the vision of our rulers.

But soon the dark sky glows like an ember. 

No wait. It’s a fire on the horizon, 

or perhaps on the ground,

Smoke rises from the streets. 

Another soul leaves the proud nation, for eternity.  

The “system” collapses but its leaders stand tall, 

in their own eyes only. 

Pride, beauty, ego. What else could matter more? 

Out of breathe, out of tears to shed and grief to give,

A people rise up, a prayer on their lips and a desire in their hearts

To save a nation that its leaders have abandoned. 

Those people are essential. They just don’t know it yet.

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