Flammeus Gladius

Carmina et Verba pro Discipulis Meis

Month: April, 2014

Getting Along

Getting Along

 

 

Babbling idiots sit next to me
When I take the bus. Unceasingly,
They assail me with speech
And are too hard to reach
With my silence. I nod and agree.

 

 

–Tom Riley

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Backwards

Backwards

 

Attitudes from another century
Make me indeed a backwards sort of guy.
All of my critics zealously agree:
Attitudes from another century
Have no place in our modern world! I’ll see
The light someday! I really ought to try.
Attitudes from another century
Make me indeed a backwards sort of guy.

 

–Tom Riley

Blunders

Blunders

 

 

Bad decisions in life I’ll defend.
With the angels themselves I’ll contend
For a tale, more or less.
Bad decisions in chess
Make me writhe in regret without end.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Bodily Haste

Bodily Haste

 

 

Though the intellect’s patient today,
Still the body cannot help but say:
“Hurry up!” Bodies die—
Whereas intellects try
To pretend they will not pass away.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Shining Garments

Shining Garments

 

 

When Mormon ranchers utter stupid things,
Their comments are repeated endlessly—
But when our Democratic queens and kings
Drool idiocy, it ain’t there to see
In papers. I recall how, jealously,
Bill Clinton said Barack should haul his bags
Instead of striving presidentially.
But was that racist? No! Such damning tags
Are not attached to Democrats. Their rags
Are shining garments of angelic light.
Their dirty laundry isn’t. All their hags
Are beauties, all their weaklings towers of might.
Eulogies greet the sainted Robert Byrd.
He isn’t just the Klan’s Exalted Turd.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Memo to the Living

Memo to the Living

 

 

When finally my energy runs out
And I end up supremely motionless—
Aside from what bacteria, no doubt,
Will do in what remains of me – the mess
I’ve made of everything will then, I guess,
Be on its way to seeming neat and clean.
In this world, I shall nevermore confess
To motivations tawdry or obscene.
Oh, you all know exactly what I mean,
You addicts of vitality! The lure
Of sweet cessation, still and cool and green,
Is what makes all our efforts seem secure.
Though I’ll be dead, I’ll still be living large.
Papers will run my obit free of charge.

 

 

–Tom Riley

St. Blather

St. Blather

 

 

It’s St. Blather proceeding again
With his unceasing sermon. Ah, when
You’re enduring such stuff,
Do you want to get tough?
Don’t be tempted, lad: just say amen!

 

 

–Tom Riley

Spencer’s Inferno

Spencer’s Inferno

 

 

“Fecemi la divina potestate
la somma sapïenza e ‘l primo amore.”

 

 

The giant brain of Spencer Hughes
Corrects the errors Dante made.
O Christian creatures, hear the news:
There is no Hell for those who’ve played
A sinful game! Don’t be afraid
To lie or cheat or kill or steal!
Don’t hesitate to leave betrayed
Your kinfolk if you get a deal!
It all depends on how you feel—
So feel abundantly at ease.
The Lord to you will soon reveal
He only really aims to please.
This message you must never edit.
It lives forever. Spencer said it.

 

 

 

–Tom Riley

Talkers

Talkers

 

 

Let’s talk about the things we just don’t know!
We shall be talk show experts by the end
Of our extensive chat. We’re talkers, so
Let’s talk about the things we just don’t know!
Ignorance is expansive: let it grow
Beyond what tends to trouble and offend!
Let’s talk about the things we just don’t know!
We shall be talk show experts by the end.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Great Things

Great Things

 

 

 

“Get in line to accomplish great things!”
Cried the salesman. “We give mortals wings
That can carry them far!
Come, whoever you are!”
And we all emerged princes and kings.

 

 

 

–Tom Riley