Pink Elephant's Graveyard

Pink Elephant’s Graveyard

The Pink Elephant's Graveyard is where we store all cultural artifacts documenting that which is uniquely K.

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

Mecca Normal “Malachi”

A short film by Jean Smith for Mecca Normal‘s most recent volume in our International Pop Underground series of 7″ 45 rpm phonograph records,“Malachi” / “Blue Sky & Branches” [IPU132].

Mecca Normal is Jean Smith – vocals & piano, David Lester – guitar.

Malachi Ritscher (1954-2006) was an American musician, free speech and anti-war activist who for many years made high quality recordings of other musicians (often jazz and experimental) performing live in Chicago. He would give a copy to the performers and sometimes these would become official releases. After the U.S. invaded Iraq, he became a vocal opponent of the war at demonstrations and was twice arrested. Like monks opposing the Vietnam war, his final act of protest culminated in an act of self-immolation. He video taped this act of protest to share it with the world. The Ritscher family has not released this final work.

Malachi

And camera goes click and you press record
and you hand the document to the jazz musician
after they perform

And you talk and you listen
and you protest this war

And there is pain and it instigates change
And there is frustration that your voice is not heard
when you protest the war –
with a sign above your head — in words

And your camera goes click as you press record
and the can of gasoline is there
for this final document — your protest against the war
and some of us understood
you know the history

And your camera goes click as you press record
and you pour the gasoline
and Malachi you light match
that ends your life
in this final statement
and some of us heard your final words

and Malachi you light the match
that ends your life
in this final document — your protest against this war
and some of us understood
and some of us heard

your final word

 



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