Re: "small war on the heels of small war"

Maggie Jaffe (
Sun, 8 Sep 1996 16:30:59 -0400

Dear Sixties People and Bob:

Who would be surprised that Pinochet threatens to seize power in Chile if
the "communists" come to power. Before the CIA-backed coup, Chile's
government was made up of broad spectrum of opposing ideologies and was not
exclusively left.
US conflicts with Latin America have always run parallel with Asia
conflicts. In fact, long before George Orwell coined the phrase Big
Brother, FDR's Good Neighbor Policy afforded the US "Guardian and Big
Brother" status in this hemisphere.

Although the poet Robert Lowell was arrested for protesting the Vietnam
War, Lowell also made the *New York Times'*
front page in 1965 when he formally declined an invitation to the White
House because "the United States policies
in Vietnam and the Dominican Republic had raised the question whether the
nation had become indifferent to the
opinions of mankind." In that same year, "Waking Early Sunday Morning" was
published in *The New York Review
of Books* to a mixed reception:

Pity the planet, all joy gone
from this sweet volcanic cone;
peace to our children when they fall
in small war on the heels of small
war-until the end of time
to police the earth, a ghost
orbiting forever lost
in our monotonous sublime.

In an earlier stanza Lowell captures Johnson's gross nature this way:

O to break loose. All life's grandeur
is something with a girl in summer . .
elated as the President
girdled by his establishment
this Sunday morning, free to chaff
his own thoughts with his bear-cuffed staff,
swimming nude, unbuttoned, sick
of his ghost-written rhetoric!