We Imagined Money Into Existence

Hans Holbien The Rich Man Brit Muse

Grant me a few moments to ruminate

over the philosophy of money–

Rich men try to bring it to the grave,

while the rest occupy Wall Street;

When someone says they don’t have faith,

it merely means they don’t have faith in the notion of faith.

We have faith in money like we have faith in gravity.

What would happen if every single person in modern civilization

started bartering with spoils of the land?

And said, “Away with pieces of copper and paper notes!”

Would it be our own Operation Bernhard?

Would it cause complete chaos that leads to mass suicide

or would it free all of humanity from

counterfeit and engineered debt?

What then, would we use to bail the banks out this time?

I turn on the television and watch

NASDAQ, Standard and Poor, NYSE Composite

(Forbes Fifty Richest Men in the World!)

roll by on the screen;

yet money isn’t inherently evil,

it can be a tool for the greatest cause–

but I fear we might have forgotten how powerful

human beings can be, when we sit together and imagine

instruments into existence.

And now we have virtual currency,

speculative transactions only possible

because of a collective faith (ah there that word is again! you exclaim)

and courage;

All things are possible, all are welcome,

Currency does not discriminate.

We shall sing and be merry at the marketplaces,

waiting for the bell, awakened to the truth.

Just wait till the Silk Road goes out of business,

we shall take all those bitcoins we stuffed in paper wallets

and go to the nearest casino and stuff our faces silly

at the international buffet.

© Alicia Khoo

NaPoWriMo Day 30



22 thoughts on “We Imagined Money Into Existence

  1. You have been reading my mind. I was just talking to someone about imaginary electronic money we all agree to believe in. Have you read Pratchett’s “Making Money”? It’s a funny piece of fiction that explores paper money.

  2. Really interesting poem, I’ve read a few of your other posts and now I’m looking forward to your next one.

  3. A mark, a yen, a buck, or a pound, it’s an antiquated way of thinking of personal wealth. One resonant thing I have heard over and over from relatives friends passing was “being healthy was true wealth”, when the wealth of the world is being focused on the toxification of our home, down to molecules and nanos, for more wealth.. the paradigm shift would be the bursting of the greed bubble… but that bubble is constantly being re-fitted to keep our level of paranoia and fear up, so we go on believing and working and creating wealth for people we will most likely never know or meet. Great piece, keep posting.

  4. Pingback: Welcome to a new friend: alicia khoo–fully awake and dangerous | Hey Sweetheart, Get Me Rewrite!

  5. I’ve been thinking a lot about the world economy too, you inspired a recent poem of mine, I tagged you in it if that’s okay.

  6. Oh to the dismal little instrument to which we have tethered to our souls. Will it mark a certain disillusion that chases all to their graves? That and right you are about the rich being guided thru life by its possessive madness. But, look on the person living in a mud hut — no electricity, water runs near depending upon the amount of rain fall, no cell phone, no car, bus is miles away, the hospital is at the end of that buses route, ice cream — may have heard of it but does know what it looks like. Then I shudder.

    • Thanks for the candid comment. 🙂 My thoughts are: Untouched by colonization and industrialization, that very same person could be living in that mud hut with a wife and two kids running around in a community of mud huts, with plenty of access to fresh river streams and a forest in which to do hunting. They might have lived there for generations, and they could even be (gasp) happy! How is it that we could be living in cities with all the convenient modern amenities yet we are losing touch with our fellow human beings and increasingly becoming more isolated as technology advances, and suicide rates continue increasing? Just saying 🙂

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