From Vietnam Veterans Against the War,

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How History Gets Written (poem)

By W. D. Ehrhart

Say I discover a cure for cancer;
say that it's cheap and never fails.
Say I restore the Arctic ice pack.
Say I preserve the Amazon.

Say I eliminate fossil fuels
and turn the babble of politicians
into an endless supply of energy,
non-polluting and free to all.

Maybe I guarantee every child
parents and schools and shelter and love.
Maybe I make mean people suck
on their thumbs. Maybe I save the whales.

What if I build a gun that doesn't shoot,
a bomb that doesn't explode, a bright pink tank?
What if I find clean water for those in need?
What if I put an end to poverty?

Say that I learn the secret of harmony,
teach the nations to live in peace.
Say I can tell you how many angels
dance on the head of a pin.

What if I line up the stars like pearls
and drape them across the Himalayas?
What would you think? What would you do?
What would you write in your history books?

—W. D. Ehrhart

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