Flammeus Gladius

Carmina et Verba pro Discipulis Meis

Tag: Provençal forms

Guest Priest

Guest Priest

The guest priest at my parish seems to buy
The NATO propaganda absolutely.
Oh, he’s repeating every single lie,
The guest priest at my parish. Seems to buy
The whole cartoon. The truth need not apply.
I do resent his crap – but not acutely.
The guest priest at my parish seems to buy
The NATO propaganda absolutely.

–Tom Riley

Short and Round

Short and Round

Has anybody noticed that he’s short
And round, this NATO hero of the hour
To whom our global leaders all pay court?
Has anybody noticed that he’s short—
And, in his t-shirt, of the sweaty sort,
This seamy guy who over all must tower?
Has anybody noticed that he’s short
And round, this NATO hero of the hour?

–Tom Riley

Accidental Visionary

The Accidental Visionary

I polish my technique. It’s all I got.
Any profundity is accidental.
Am I a Blake, a Milton? I am not.
I polish my technique. It’s all I got.
I don’t reach for the stars. Well, not a lot.
I’m neither stoical nor sentimental.
I polish my technique. It’s all I got.
Any profundity is accidental.

–Tom Riley

Unbridled Vanity

Unbridled Vanity

I flatter your unbridled vanity.
I’m helping you advance, I’m sure, to Hell.
Your ears hear, but your heart declines to see
I flatter. Your unbridled vanity
Insists that every smiling word from me
Is justified. I do not wish you well.
I flatter your unbridled vanity.
I’m helping you advance, I’m sure, to Hell.

–Tom Riley

Latest War

Latest War

The latest war for Yankee righteousness?
The Yankees won’t admit that they are losing.
Am I critiquing past crusaders? Yes.
The latest war for Yankee righteousness
Shows that the whole damn arc has been a mess
Worthy of deep critique and fierce accusing.
The latest war for Yankee righteousness:
The Yankees won’t admit that they are losing.

–Tom Riley

Trivial Point

A Trivial Point

You made your pencil’s point, sir, too damn sharp.
You should have known the fucking thing would break.
Though it is not my custom so to carp,
You made your pencil’s point, sir, too damn sharp.
In pencil heaven now it strums a harp
Of sheer futility. For goodness’ sake,
You made your pencil’s point, sir, too damn sharp!
You should have known the fucking thing would break.

–Tom Riley

False Indeed

False Indeed

It may be false, indeed, what I declare—
But nonetheless I can’t be called a liar.
Expecting facts from me is far from fair.
It may be false indeed, what I declare
With unrestrained conviction. On the air
It may ring loud and never quite expire.
It may be false indeed, what I declare.
But, nonetheless, I can’t be called a liar.

–Tom Riley

Positive Thinking amongst the Ophiolaters

Positive Thinking amongst the Ophiolaters

You’re tempted toward a whole new set of sins?
Positive thinkers say that’s quite all right:
Experience expands, the hero wins!
You’re tempted: toward a whole new set of sins
You’re moving. Shy smiles cover eager grins.
What is it in you, lad, that needs to fight?
You’re tempted toward a whole new set of sins.
Positive thinkers say that’s quite all right.

–Tom Riley

Healthy Skepticism

Healthy Skepticism

They say your brain is operating, sir.
I’m waiting till I see the evidence.
Something, observers tell me, is astir:
They say your brain is operating. Sir,
I don’t deny that miracles occur—
But is this one in sync with past events?
They say your brain is operating, sir?
I’m waiting till I see the evidence.

–Tom Riley

Plan Your Day

Plan Your Day

I’ve planned my day – but will it go along?
Experience suggests that it will not.
Up early, I’ve composed a tuneless song.
I’ve planned my day. But will it go along?
Or have I viewed its character all wrong?
Do shining plans conceal chaotic rot?
I’ve planned my day. But will it go along?
Experience suggests that it will not.

–Tom Riley