On Friday I paid a visit to my almost 101.5 year old friend Marie Runyon. Her apartment walls are filled with buttons and posters and pictures of causes and people she has fought for throughout her very long life. Above her office work desk is an old poster of Mother Jones with the quote "Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living". This pretty much sums up Marie's philosophy too!
I only knew about Mother Jones magazine thanks to articles that were often shared by my real and FB friend Jeffrey. I knew nothing about the woman. Marie's memory is fading. When I asked her for more info she had little to share so it was time for a Google learning moment from that gadget that Marie can't get over - the IPhone.
I think Mother Jones is Marie's guardian angel. When denounced on the Senate floor as the "grandmother of all agitators" Mother Jones said "I hope to live long enough to be the great-grand mother of all agitators" - perhaps Marie fulfilled her wish.
Wikipedia has many literary references. My favorite is that Carl Sandburg referred to Mother Jones as the "she" in "She'll be Coming Round the Mountain". I believe that. The song was one of the first camp songs I ever learned from my mother and Marie's song memory is very much in tact so we sang together.