Flammeus Gladius

Carmina et Verba pro Discipulis Meis

Exit Advice

Exit Advice

 

Don’t delay as the signals all shout!
Don’t indulge in implausible doubt!
Cease your damn nervous humming!
Lad, you know what is coming—
So don’t wallow in falsehood. Get out!

 

—Tom Riley

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Popular

Popular

 

He won a following of idiots—
But that’s enough to keep you popular.
By throwing endless self-indulgent fits,
He won a following of idiots.
They praised his salivation and his wits.
Remember, kids: sheer fraud can get you far!
He won a following of idiots—
And that’s enough to keep you popular.

 

—Tom Riley

Schadenfreude

Schadenfreude

 

You have stumbled — and fallen so low
That the sight is a treat to the foe
You did not know you had.
It’s exciting, not sad.
I rejoice in your failure, you know.

 

—Tom Riley

Getting Away with Murder

Getting Away with Murder

 

Dave Armstrong’s changed his super-learned mind.
Μάχαιρα isn’t ξίφος, folks — so there!
Because these words are different, Dave will dare
To rule Augustine and Aquinas blind.
The past to which these goofballs were assigned
Wasn’t a venue brainy lads could share.
Of our developments quite unaware,
They stood with caveman concepts long aligned.
But now, as you can see, we have progressed.
Angelic Armstrong and insightful Shea
Know that society must now divest
Itself of concepts such as justice. Hey!
Give all your arguments an endless rest!
With murder, murderers must get away.

 

—Tom Riley

 

(Mark Shea crony Dave Armstrong changes his mind on capital punishment.)

Hope for Chelsea Handler

Hope for Chelsea Handler

 

There’s sad news here for Chelsea Handler, folks.
She’ll never get to realize her dream
Of sex with Donald Trump. To make that team,
A gal needs stunning looks, not pointless jokes.
In seas of envy, lovelorn Chelsea soaks.
Melania’s appearance is extreme—
And of the goddess sort. Oh, it would seem
That there’s no hope! On this news, Chelsea chokes.
Ours is an age, though, of technology.
Frau Handler, why not try the robot way?
The experts will assemble cunningly
A Donald replica with which to play.
You’re sure to make the cost when back easily
When Kathy Griffin rents him for a day.

 

—Tom Riley

Man of Letters

Man of Letters

 

An illiterate loser named Shea
Made a garish and fleeting display
Of rhetorical shit.
The crowd hailed it as wit:
“He’s the Chesterton, folks, of our day!”

 

—Tom Riley

Unsentimental

Unsentimental

 

With my foes I have never been gentle.
After all, every body’s a rental
And will soon be returned.
Every house will be burned.
I face facts — and am not sentimental.

 

—Tom Riley

Visionary

Visionary

 

Folks: my vision you have to affirm!
Inspiration’s the ordinate term
For what moved me to see
All the things shown to me.
While you listen, of course, you will squirm.

 

—Tom Riley

Mother, May I?

Mother, May I?

 

(for Thomas Thoits)

 

I want to write a sonnet — and I can.
No nun forbids — and so I claim I may.
But these distinctions, may I also say,
Are wholly artificial. Now I plan
To do away with them. Not child but man,
I dare assail the pitiless display
Of bogus rules. I’ll sweep them all away!
They’ll know the fire! They’re in the frying pan
Already! I declare I won’t be bossed.
Like Milton, I attempt no middle flight.
Like Satan, I arise and count no cost.
What’s false is wrong. What’s true alone is right.
The diction-monger’s paradise is lost.
I proved I could — and also proved I might.

 

—Tom Riley

Opinionated

Opinionated

 

I’m forming my opinion of you, sir—
A task obnoxious, yes, but necessary
Now while your idiocies are astir.
I’m forming my opinion of you, sir.
Don’t rush to change your posture. As you were.
Of artifice a critic must be wary.
I’m forming my opinion of you, sir—
A task obnoxious, yes, but necessary.

 

—Tom Riley