Ruminations in the Park

I look around Union Square at all the people sitting here, relaxing on a beautiful Tuesday afternoon and wonder who among us would mount a resistance against the rise of an oppressive government. Would it be the man sitting across from me, highlighting lines from a textbook? The one wearing his reading glasses on the tip of his nose? The girl sitting next to me reading a novel while texting? The two old women catching up? The young woman looking through pictures on her Canon camera? The man with his headphones listening to music, an audio book, a speech from 1984? The two old men sharing a picnic? Me, observing them all?

Perhaps neither of us would. Perhaps we would all just flee to Canada or Europe or South America.

What if right now, as the sun shines down on us, a country’s government decided to drop a bomb and flatten Union Square, turning us all to dust and human waste? We would all be so mangled, authorities wouldn’t even come to collect us. A monument would be erected above our melted remains and people would weep on us every second of May.

They would think: how sad, how tragic. Perhaps, yes. But what a sight! Human, black, white, mixed, Asian, Latin American, melded to the trees, the earth, the buildings, the pigeons, to each other. All of us united under a message of grief, regardless of what we were doing, hoping to do, or thinking of achieving.

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