Drawing in a Time of Fear & LiesWeekend

Rulers Who Neither See, Nor Feel, Nor Know

Clinging leech-like to their fainting countries.

Mark Harris, “An old, mad, blind, despised and dying king” (2018), spray paint on discarded mattress (courtesy of the artist)

ENGLAND in 1819 

An old, mad, blind, despised, and dying king,__
Princes, the dregs of their dull race, who flow
Through public scorn,—mud from a muddy spring,—
Rulers who neither see, nor feel, nor know,
But leech-like to their fainting country cling,
Till they drop, blind in blood, without a blow,—
A peopled starve and stabbed in the untilled field,—
An army, which liberticide and prey
Makes as a two-edged sword to all who wield,—
Golden and sanguine laws which tempt and slay ;
Religion Christless, Godless—a book sealed ;
A Senate,—Time’s worst statute unrepealed,—
Are graves, from which a glorious Phantom may
Burst, to illumine our tempestuous day.

— Percy Bysshe Shelley

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