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Michael Jackson's Disturbing Poem


A poem written by the "King of Pop" and carved into some sort of tombstone-looking thing will be auctioned off next month along with a slew of other property from Jackson's Neverland Ranch. The five-day auction, which is expected to bring in more than three million dollars, will also feature the gates to Neverland, some MTV awards, and a pair of jewel-encrusted socks. But I doubt that anything will be as disturbingly symbolic of Jackson's recent years as the poem.

What would Michael Jackson write a poem about? Children, of course. And if you're starting to get that uncomfortable feeling in the back of your mind, you'd be right. Here's the opening of "Children of the World." It begins by introducing a weird, idealistic vision: the world's children uniting to do innocent things--with Michael Jackson--while the rest of the us struggle along. That's all well and good (if poorly written), but, as you'll see, the poem quickly gets uncomfortable.

Children of the world, we'll do it
We'll meet on endless shores
Making sandcastles and floating our boats
While people fight and defend their point of view
Forever putting on masks that are new
We'll swing the tide of time and do it.

Children of the world, we'll do it
With song and dance and innocent bliss
And the soft caress of a loving kiss
We'll do it.

Jackson may have meant that second to last line to be innocent, but I have a hard time reading it that way. This is a man who has been accused of molesting an underage boy. At the very least, someone should have realized it would be a bad idea to try to sell this thing.

The poem blithely continues with Jackson weaving between the real world of people with jobs who struggle with things--including, rather mysteriously, carpetbaggers(!)--and his preferred world of children and innocence.

While traders trade and haggle their price
And politicians try so hard to be nice
We'll meet on endless shores and floating our boats
We'll do it.

While lawyers argue and doctors treat
Stockbrokers quote the price on meat
While preachers preach and ring the bell
Carpetbaggers with something to sell
We'll sing and dance in innocent bliss
With the soft caress of a loving kiss
We'll do it.
Meeting on endless shores
Making sandcastles and floating our boats
We'll do it.

We'll ride the rainbow, a cloud, a storm
Flying in the wind, we'll change our form
We'll reach the stars, embrace the moon
We'll break the barrier and be there soon

While architects plan their buildings high
And trade unions raise their hue and cry
While boardroom squabbles generate heat
And in secret places dealers meet

We'll sing and dance in innocent bliss
And the soft caress of a loving kiss
We'll do it.

While philosophers grapple and continue to tackle
Endless dilemmas of body and mind
Physicists wander, continue to ponder
Perennial questions of space and time
Archeologists survey, continue to dig
Bygone treasures small and big

As the poem nears its conclusion, Jackson seems at least subconsciously aware of the trouble with his "innocent" affection for children, bringing up psychoanalysis, priests taking confessions, and the meaning of sin, before repeating his unfortunate refrain.

Psychologists probe, analyze the tears
Of hysterical notions, phobias, fears

While priests take confessions
In a serious session
And people struggle
In the hustle and bustle
In the noise and din
On the meaning of sin
We'll touch the stars, embrace the moon
Break the barrier, arrive there soon
Ride the rainbow, the cloud, the storm
Flying in the wind, changing our form

Children of the world, we'll do it
With song and dance and innocent bliss
The soft caress of a loving kiss
We'll do it.

It's a strange, strange world that Jackson lives in. I think Brian Riles of Buzzfeed summed up the poem best: "Note to the children: don't do it. "