Tuesday, December 11, 2012

`Mother Bloor (We Are Many)'

"We are many, they are few"
She told the working poor
And what she learned, she wrote all down
In "The Life of Mother Bloor."

Ella Reeve was born
In 1862
And as a child met Walt Whitman
On the ferry.
Her mother died
When she was seventeen
And at nineteen, she married.
Her husband told her of
The Molly Maguires' Trial
And nineteen innocent miners hanged.
Then she had three kids
And when two of them died
Her own life filled with pain.

She fought for the right
Of women to vote
And joined the Knights of Labor.
Then she divorced
And moved to New York
And heard Debs speak for workers in America.
She organized for
De Leon's group
But felt it ignored the daily fight.
So when she was forty
In 1901
She joined Debs' Socialists one night. (chorus)

When miners struck
In 1902
She raised money for their families.
And she organized the sale
Of "Appeal to Reason"
And spoke against child labor and lynching.
When brickmakers struck
She was there
And organized in Connecticut.
And when Upton Sinclair
Published "The Jungle"
Her research proved true his book.

She worked with Katharine
Hepburn's mother
A leader of suffragettes.
Then organized in Ohio
Where thirteen socialist mayors
Folks did elect.
She talked to miners
In West Virginia
And there met Mother Jones.
And when men attacked
The D.C. women's march
Ma Bloor marched and
Heard her sisters' moan. (chorus)

She was in Calumet,
And saw goons kill seventy-three kids.
And when she helped
Ludlow miners
Saw Rockefeller's troops kill kids again.
She opposed World War I
And worked to free
All Wobblies who were jailed.
Then helped form
The Workers Party
After seeing why Socialists had failed.

She worked to free
Tom Mooney
And save Sacco and Vanzetti.
And on the night
Of their execution
Was arrested by Boston police.
With thousands she marched
At their funeral
And stood next to Sacco's widow
At the New York rally.
And in the Great Depression
Of the 1930s
She helped unionize industry. (chorus)

She fought against
Fascism's rise
And tried to stop a new world war.
All her life she fought
For all workers
And to free those who history books ignored.
So remember Mother Bloor
And learn from Mother Bloor
If still you are ruled by the few.
And organize like Ma Bloor
And fight like Ma Bloor
Until workers create a world that is new. (chorus)

No comments: