Gold of Dido

by flammeusgladius

The Gold of Dido



(for Debra Saunders)



“Nec aliud per illos dies populus credulitate, prudentes diversa fama tulere.”

–Tacitus, Annales, 16:2.



Nero, exultant, waited for the gold
of Dido: that alone could bail him out.
Court poets, like their emperor, were sold
on the bright plan and entertained no doubt.
They strove to cook up golden lines about
the coming gold, the gold of ancient story,
the gold that made the Prince of Princes shout
and sing and celebrate his future glory.
Let’s hear it for that hopeful category
of gold, O aureate poetic guys!
Let’s hear it for the prince, no longer gory
but gifted with a scheme of godlike size!
Let’s give up golden praise, lads, right on cue!
That selfsame gold will save Obama too.



–Tom Riley