Rise Venice Rise

By Jim Smith


A dream so sublime
A fate so unfair

Rise Venice Rise
Rise Venice Rise
Rise Venice Rise

They faked an election, back in ’25
Right there our independence died

Venice, they filled in your canals, destroyed your pier,
They tore down your buildings, bulldozed your beauty.

They seduced the weak, and targeted the strong
If you don’t like it, take your protests — down town

Rise Venice Rise

They came like vandals, waving court orders
They destroyed our dreams, and ruled like conquerors

Rise Venice Rise

They sent in their black-shirted army
Arrested our poets, our poor, and our dissidents

Rise Venice Rise

They swamped us with building code and parking inspectors
They sent us their traffic, and kept the receipts

They drove our poor from their homes
and then harassed them because they were homeless

Rise Venice Rise

They prowled Oakwood
Planting their drugs and harvesting their criminals

They even came in the night to steal our statue
named Freedom, from our lonely circle

Rise Venice Rise

Even our pagodas weren’t safe
Destroyed and replaced with plastic

Rise Venice Rise

One morning we will come out of our homes
with picks and shovels and dig out our canals

We’ll come with hammers and saws
and build homes for all our Venetian sisters and brothers

We’ll come with guitars and drums
and sing a song of peace and freedom

Venice will rise, Venice will rise


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