In Case You Missed It II
December 7, 2016 § Leave a comment
I am a regular listener to Amy Goodman’s program “Democracy Now”. A few days ago, Amy devoted the entire program to a tribute to Yip Harburg. He was a socialist who wrote and was a significant creator of The Wizard of Oz, Finnian’s Rainbow and several other hit shows on Broadway. During the McCarthy era he was blacklisted and unable to find work for several years.
Here is a link to the show, narrated by his son discussing Yip’s life.
Here is poem by Yip, read by him at the end of the above linked program.
I copied it from the recording and I have some doubt about the word “because” in the penultimate line. But even if I made an error, you can get a glimpse of Yip’s irrepressible humor and spirit from his verse.
Lives of Great Men
by Yip Harburg
Lives of great men all remind us Greatness takes no easy way All the heroes of tomorrow Are the heretics of today. Socretes and Gallileo; John Brown Thaureau Christ and Debs Hear the night cry, “Down with traitors” And at dawn shout “Up the rebs.” Nothing ever seems to bust em Gallows, crosses, prison bars Though we tried to readjust em There they are among the stars Why do great men all remind us We can write our names on high? All because we leave behind us Footprints in the FBI