With apologies to whomever it was that wrote Twas the Night Before Christmas.
Twas the night of the Living Debt
Twas the night o’ the Living Debt, I know for a fact
Not a creature was stirring, not even a rat.
The man-traps were laid by the chimney with care,
In hopes that debt-collectors soon would be there;
Occupiers nestled all snug in the streets,
While visions of anarchy made dance in their feet;
And she with her tattoos, and I with my beard,
Had just settled down in the long summer weird,
When out in the park there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the tent to see what was the matter.
Away to Zuccotti I went in civilians,
Tore down the barricades, exhorted the millions.
The neon shining on the new-fallen trash
Gave the shine of desire, as if it were cash.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But wandering debt zombies out in the clear,
With a nasty debt driver, so fetid and rank,
I knew in a moment it must be Big Bank.
More rapid than eagles his debtors they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, Student! now, Medical! now, Housing; for shame!
On Credit, On Store, On Debit! You cards all know your name!
To the top of the ratings! down the credit ranking score!
Now debt away! debt away! debt away more!”
As bank notes that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the houses the zombies they flew,
With a van full of writs, and Mr Big Bank too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard first the banshee,
The roaring and sighing of each fierce zombie.
As I joined in the march, and was turning around,
Out the paddy wagon came Big Bank with a hound.
He was dressed all in black, from his head to his boot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with pepper and soot;
A bundle of debtors he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a slaver turning the rack.
His eyes — how they glittered! his frowns were so deep!
His breath was like Hades, his mind fast asleep!
His foul mouth displayed wide like a whirlpool,
And the beard of his chin grew grey and cruel;
The stump of a gas pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had fat face and a huge round belly,
That shook when he howled, like a bowlful of jelly.
He was muscled and plump, the evil old elf,
And I cried when I saw him, in spite of myself;
The look in his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I nothing but debt;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And took all my possessions; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, across the city he rose;
He sprang to his van, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they flew, shredding judgments of dismissal.
But I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight,
“Night of the Living Debt, there is no good night.”
Night of the Living Debt
7pm Washington Square Park
Occupied New York City