January 20, 2017

With thanks and apologies to E.A. Poe…


On the twentieth of January, while I pondered something scary,

Over many a quaint, forgotten virtue from centuries before—

While I watched it, never clapping, suddenly there came a tapping,

As of someone crudely crapping, crapping on my chamber floor.

“Tis some impostor,” I muttered, “crapping on this oval floor—

Only this and nothing more.”


Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak November;

When the inveterate dissembler spewed his lies into the fore.

Eagerly I hoped the moral would rise up in electoral

Waves upon the morrow—but the morrow dawned with loss galore—

The rare and radiant maiden knew not what the angels had in store—

Unelected she for evermore.


And the sulking, sad, and hulking bluster of the orange jester

Killed me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;

So that now, to still the ringing in my ears, I stood there singing

“Hallelujah” while still clinging to a notion live no more—

Some late notion that what had never happened here before—

No, a woman would not soar.


Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,

“Sir,” said I, “not Madam, truly your decency I implore;

The fact is my faith was sapping, and so rudely you came crapping,

And so brazenly you came flapping and crapping on my chamber floor,

That I scarce could think ‘twas true”—and here I closed the open door—

Now just us and nothing more.


Into his blackness I stood peering, but long he stood there gloating, jeering,

Doubting, I dreamed dreams no citizen ever had to dream before;

But his volume kept increasing, and hot gas he kept releasing,

And the one word I kept on seizing was the hallowed name, “Al Gore…”

This I whispered, and the blatherer eyed me as if he thought I swore—

“This will be worse than that for sure.”


Back toward the window turning, my stomach within me churning,

Soon again I heard lips flapping somewhat louder than before.

“Surely,” said I, “surely that is something that takes practice;

Expelling such malignant gases—how unabashed and classless.

But let me calm myself a moment and this reality explore—

’Tis four years and nothing more.”


I guess I must have muttered, for he asked me if I stuttered,

With mocking eyes the ghastly Craven whom I could not help abhor,

Not the least obeisance made he; with that scowl he tried to slay me;

I knew deep down he would betray me, no matter what sacred oath he swore—

He sat down like a monarch in his Palace adding up the score—

Smirking, he began to snore.


Then his supreme disdain beguiling I could not keep from riling

My sense of duty into waking up this giant boor,

“Though thy pate be garish carrot, I,” I said, “will grin and bear it,

If you feel that you must wear it, but hide you something more?—

Tell me what thy orange surface conceals from those outside your trusted core!”

Quoth the Craven, “Never more.”


Much I marveled how this ungainly specter could prevaricate so plainly,

Though its answer little meaning—but great relevancy bore;

For I could not help but seeing that no living human being

Could not but run fleeing from this ravenous carnivore—

Ravenous beast sitting now, soiling couch as well as floor,

There could be no rapport.


Then the Craven, like a Trojan pony, acting all the wretched phony

Spoke one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.

“Mine,” with such disdain he uttered that my eyelids quickly fluttered—

So I scarcely more than muttered, “Other fiends have tried before—

Other fiends have tried and failed—and failed—before.”

Quoth the Craven, “Nevermore.”


Startled by such unfounded megalomania unbounded,

“Doubtless,” said I, “you’re a mere misshapen soul wrecked upon the shore,

Unknowing what it was you wanted, you pandered and you taunted

Falling fast and falling faster ‘til us all you sucked into your holy war—

For the god you can’t help but worship and will worship evermore:

You are the god that you adore.”


And the Craven tried beguiling my expression into smiling,

But I did not stop reviling this repulsive thing looming o’er the sacred floor;

Then toward me he came snaking, his mini fingers shaking

As if to get me quaking, but I gave no ground to the bogus matador—

To this grim, ungainly, ghastly, pathetic, washed-up troubadour,

I said, “Never—nevermore.”


“Take this office,” I said, pressing, “but without a single blessing

Of any man or woman with an ounce of goodness in their core;

You may have the spotlight, but you know deep down you’re not bright

And in the head you’re not right, no matter how loudly you gloat o’er,

No matter how much you berate and baffle the press corps.

“You, my friend, you’re the whore.”


“Yes,” I pounced like an agile fencer, seeing him grow tenser,

“You whored yourself like no politician has before—

Though you may have got it, it is they, you know, who’ve bought it—

This prize—this office held by men who stood for something more;

Wretch!” I cried, “What in God’s name is it you stand for?”

Quoth the Craven, “More. More. More.”


“Villain!” said I, “thing of evil!—hubris will, as with any devil—

Whether election sent, or whether hackers tossed thee here ashore,

Bring you justly crashing down upon the ruins of what you’ve been smashing—

This republic that you’re bashing—tell me truly, I implore—

Do you—do you know that it is the People you work for?”

He trembled and headed for the door.


“Wait!” said I, “thing of falseness—one so completely balls-less

That you have to brag about all the women you have scored—

I hope the pussies get all grabby and aren’t too grossed-out to grab your flabby

Fat and scabby form from out this house that I adore—

That your downfall will be all the rare and radiant maidens you deplore.”

Quoth the Craven, “No—no more!”


“How does it feel to be belittled?” I shrieked, giving no remittal,

“Get thee back to the sordid ways you followed heretofore!

Leave no more slimy tokens of the lies that you hath spoken!

Leave our government unbroken!—quit this one and only oval floor!

Take thy fragile ego from our hearts and thy sickness to some dark and distant shore!”

Now I had him shaking on the floor.


“This honor it is fleeting, and if you persist with petty tweeting,

Everyone will know that you’re a buffoon and nothing more;

And though now you may be dreaming of a world reordered by your scheming,

History will see not one thing redeeming among the crimes you’ll answer for!”

And with that I crossed the oval chamber and exited the door

To enter there again—nevermore!