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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
chico Bread & Roses (singing group) (6) Lyr/Chords Add: BREAD AND ROSES (James Oppenheim) 08 Jan 06

    C                                             G7
As we go marching, marching in the beauty of the day,
   C                            G      D7          G7
A million darkened kitchens, a thousand mill lofts gray,
    C                                    F             G7
Are touched with all the radiance that a sudden sun discloses,
          C                               F             G7 C
For the people hear us singing Bread and roses! Bread and roses!

As we go marching, marching, we battle too for men,
For they are women's children, and we mother them again.
Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;
Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread but give us roses!

As we go marching, marching, unnumbered women dead
Go crying through our singing their ancient cry for bread.
Small art and love and beauty their drudging spirits knew.
Yes, it is bread we fight for - but we fight for roses, too!

As we go marching, marching, we bring the greater days.
The rising of the women means the rising of the race.
No more the drudge and idler - ten that toil where one reposes,
But a sharing of life's glories - Bread and roses! Bread and roses!

[In Lawrence, Massachusetts, textile companies were angered when in 1911 state law reduced the work week for women and children from 56 to 54 hours. They retaliated by increasing the work load, but not the wages. The workers responded with a massive strike; over twenty thousand men, women and children won concessions by staying out of work for ten weeks. With a rallying cry of "Better to starve fighting than starve working," the women stayed out for nearly three months. 'During a protest march, some of the women carried a sign that said, "We Want Bread And Roses Too!" The slogan was generally picked up, and the Lawrence action became known as the Bread and Roses strike.' Bread symbolizes economic justice and roses represent quality of life. A poem written at the time by James Oppenheim to commemorate the strike was set to music.]

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