Flammeus Gladius

Carmina et Verba pro Discipulis Meis

Month: February, 2016

I Get Told

I Get Told

 

 

“With intensity, never a blink,
I shall tell you the way that I think!
Now I boldly proceed!”
Will you do so indeed?
Into pools of despair I shall sink….

 

 

–Tom Riley

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Arrogant Agnostic

The Arrogant Agnostic

 

 

Even if God at last does not exist,
I’m confident that He will favor me.
You say vacuity has closed its fist?
Even if God at last does not exist,
even if no one’s present to be pissed
at all my enemies, the skies agree.
Even if God at last does not exist,
I’m confident that He will favor me.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Murder Most Clear

Murder Most Clear

 

 

“Oh, my prophetic soul!”

 

 

Daddy’s ghost gave the clue and the cue.
What the ghost said, it turned out, was true.
Oh, the ghost was sincere!
Murder: murder most clear!
But why tell? Hamlet already knew.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Standard Procedure

Standard Procedure

 

 

Ah, what standards you’re striving to keep!
They are minimal standards, and deep
in your heart you’re aware
of how little you care.
Do the minimum — then go to sleep.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Quod Scripsi Scripsi

Quod Scripsi Scripsi

 

 

With my scribbles, few readers are smitten.
By the bug I esteem, few are bitten.
From my views, they dissent.
And I ought to repent.
What I’ve written, I tell them, I’ve written.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Screamers

Screamers

 

 

Exclamation points! Use them a lot!
When your case is weak, they’re all you’ve got!
They can stir! They can scare!
They should go everywhere!
They will show you are strong — when you’re not!

 

 

–Tom Riley

Orderly

Orderly

 

 

In a fixed form, I’m guarded by order–
and I give a big hug to my warder.
But, attempting free verse,
I’d be under a curse.
I’m sure chaos would give me no quarter.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Unspeakable

Unspeakable

 

 

Doing no work, he still takes his pay.
His employers throw money away
with a sense of relief.
They don’t say he’s a thief:
that’s just something they don’t like to say.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Same Song

Same Song

 

 
I am singing, at last, the same song:
my conviction is settled and strong
beyond any keen question
or well-focused suggestion–
though I may be demonstrably wrong.

 

 

–Tom Riley

Man of Many Words

Man of Many Words

 

 

“A Christian never ever builds a wall!”
the pope declares. “He builds a bridge instead.
He opens wide his arms and welcomes all.
Mobs threaten — and he lets them come ahead.
If countrymen and women end up dead
or robbed or raped, hey, that’s the way it goes!
If by the proper spirit he is led,
a Christian isn’t moved by threats like those.
The wind of change inevitably blows–
so smile, O Christian, when it blows you down!
Follow with zeal your suicidal nose!
Portray with zeal a suicidal clown…!”
“Our pope,” they tell me, “never said such stuff
exactly….” Not exactly. Close enough.

 

 

–Tom Riley