Ode to the Throwing off of Debt

(Seisachtheía)

Edward Sanders


O, Seisachtheía in the Redemption of the Human!
O, Seisachtheía in the Ultimate Decency!

O, Forgiveness of Debts,
so Ancient, so New, so Now!

He came to power, Solon, about 600 BC
in a time of great debts & people enslaved for debt
Solon enacted the Seisachtheía
“the shaking-off of burdens”
nullified all debts
freed those who had been placed into slavery to pay a debt
and he limited the amount of land a person could own!

O, shake off the mortgages! Shake off the usurious credit card debts!
O Ghost of Solon, shake it! shake that seisachtheía thing!

All in an instant
(to prevent “shake-off scams”)
annul mortgages, halt bankruptcy
then lift away
in one erasure
all debts & impoundments,
houndings by credit bureaus,
seizures by judges.

Lift away! Lift away!
O Ghost of Ancient Solon
Lift away
everyone's debts
& wipe away the white chalk
from the darkness

O Ancient Wiper!