A Call to Arms / The Young Man’s Resolution
Ian Rollison

Part I: A Call to Arms

Young man, hear me!
I am your mother,
To which you owe loyalty
Like the harvest owes the farmhand.
I have raised you from birth,
Suckled you and defended you
From puerile days to independence.
As mothers must bleed for their own,
So must you now for me.
Let filial piety
Be your guide, child.
Join your siblings and
Go forth.

Young man, hear me!
I am your father,
To which you owe loyalty
Like the steel owes the smith.
I have raised you from birth,
Shown you strength of
Body and mind. Do me proud,
Son; stamp out our enemies
Like your vanity. Prove to
All your lineage, prove
To all my dreams.
Join your siblings and
Go forth.

Young man, hear me!
I am your sibling,
To which you owe loyalty
Like the vagrant owes the leper.
I have known you since birth,
Joined in your tales and
Reveries, shared breasts of
The nation, drown in our
Fears, paid homage to the
Machines. That is why you
Must follow me now.
Join your siblings and
Go forth.

Young man, hear me!
I am your teacher,
To which you owe loyalty
Like the tenderfoot owes the artisan.
I have taught you since birth,
Weaned you from ignorance,
And sculpted you like your
Sibling, a masterwork of
Social engineering, made
For the purpose of the nation,
The purpose of us all.
Join your siblings and
Go forth.

Young man, hear me!
I am your nation,
To which you owe loyalty
Like the serf owes its lord.
I have watched you since birth,
Marveled at your progress,
Observed your whims and
Desires, supplied your needs.
You and yours are the
Carpenter’s hammer, and I
The future’s architect.
Join your siblings and
Go forth.

Part II: The Young Man’s Resolution

Mother, hear me!
For I am your son,
The fruit you have born,
This babe you have suckled
And defended since birth.
The world seeks to taste
Of your fruit, to devour
Its tender flesh and eat
The seeds of dreams. Would
You defend your fruit, I
Would honor my mother.
But I must be gnashed and
Torn asunder for you.
Yet I will join my siblings and
Go forth.

Father, hear me!
For I am your son,
The metal you have hammered
And hardened since birth.
You rebuked me for faults
Of age, not character,
Impressed me to forsaken
Desires of self, bound me
To aims not my own, all
For unseen strength and
Rash virility.
But I must be shackled and
Torn asunder for you.
Yet I will join my siblings and
Go forth.

Sibling, hear me!
For I am your brother,
Your comrade in arms, your
Loving friend since birth.
We have shared lives and
Songs, done rights and wrongs,
Been born of the nation,
And bowed to the machines.
I have followed for love
And kindly duty
Not vaunting nor desire.
But I must follow and be
Torn asunder for you.
Yet I will join my siblings and
Go forth.

Teacher, hear me!
For I am your student,
The apprentice you have
Schooled and cultured since birth.
I have absorbed your lies,
Been as sheep to shepherd,
Embodied your doctrines
And disowned my self in
Your creed’s name; my body,
A graven image of
What might have been.
So I must be forfeit and
Torn asunder for you.
Yet I will join my siblings and
Go forth.

Nation, hear me!
For I am your native,
The servant you have
Indentured since birth.
You have shackled me
With gilded promises,
Made me subject to
Machinations, kept me
Blind for want of power
And thoughtless self-
Propagation.
But I must be misused and
Torn asunder for you.
Yet I will join my siblings and
Go forth.

People, hear me!
This, I resolve:
I will bleed for my mother,
Pursue my father’s dreams,
Squire my faux friends,
Embody learned lies,
And labor for my nation.
I have naught to live for,
My conscience silenced by
Machines and men. I have
Buried my dreams beneath
My home, my body
Must follow in some foreign
Land. This avowed, I
Go forth.