The Holiday Control Mechanism

All over the store they tear at neatly piled
stacks of shirts and sweaters, digging
desperately for the right size on today’s
today-only, rock bottom, door-busting,

low, low, lowest prices ever, as another
year of this seemingly forever ritual
of mad spending at Christmas grinds
on like Thanksgiving and the other

habituated holidays imprinted into our
DNA have and will continue to be expertly
promoted into the mindless energy
of a population enthralled with itself

and its Hallmark and Disney feel-good
moments. However, as beautifully designed,
money-making hustles and pillars of capitalism
as they are, they function even more

spectacularly as efficient speed bumps
in the ever rigorous and constant war waged
against change by our loving masters. For any
social justice movement is almost always

put on hold till after the holidays, any
momentum gathered towards a tipping
point shelved in favor of eating a large
bird or shopping frantically for bargains,

while continuing the magic thinking
about some fat guy in a red outfit.
Without a shot ever being fired,
the impetus to change is, thus, thwarted

by the paralyzing repetition of our make-
believe, traditional holidays, which like
all traditions keep people locked-up
in the past, forever prisoners of the few.

Paul Lojeski's poetry has appeared in journals and online. He’s also the author of the satiric novel, The Reverend Jimmy Pup. He lives with his wife and daughter in Port Jefferson, NY. Read other articles by Paul.