Category writing


Shelley gave us a memorable portrait of 1819 (“An old, mad, blind, despised, and dying King”) and Yeats of 1919 (“We…planned to bring the world under a rule, Who are but weasels fighting in a hole”), and like, 2019 is just around the corner, and yet I don’t think anyone’s stepped up to bat to […]

Life with/against the Circus

Life with/against the Circus I joined the circus sort of, Ran away and joined the day we Tamed, beneath the overpass, menageries of sarin gas, The bearded lady, the leopards, and the kiwi. That morning, some drunk ape took my ticket. I said I should be comped because I Helped at the concession stand. He […]

Profiles in “Courage”: Howard Rushmore

Howard Rushmore had dreamed from a young age of being a progressive journalist, and by age 16 he was writing both for his high school and town newspapers. This was back in late ’20s, when they still let students do such things. Unfortunately, the stuff he wrote in the local paper about the school got […]

2016 Predictions Graded

As is my custom, I made several predictions last January for the upcoming year, Nostradamus-style, in cryptic verse. Now that 2016 has come to a close, it behooves us to see how close my Delphic rhymes came to the truth. Prediction #1: Who drove the campaign bus? The Rus. When we voted, who did the computin’? […]

The God of This World

The God of This World Three brothers drew. Three brothers drew, by lots, Their stewardship of this round earth’s three spheres: Defined by long tradition as: the sky; The sea; sweet (euphemistic) by-and-by; And this (not euphemistic) vale of tears. (These number four.) Each brother claimed his turf: So Jove, the most pleased, vaulted to the […]

I Can’t Remember If Belloc Already Wrote Something like This

On our trip to the avian sanctuary A condor bore off little Mary. The ranger used his sternest words: “Read the signs. ‘Don’t feed the birds.’”

The Universal Empire

The Universal Empire The universal empire of all men,     Bound by one law and governed by one hand,     Was what (claims Plutarch) Alexander planned When he yoked Persia, Greece, and Egypt. When The Indus stymies him, when, to surprise     Carthage, no fleet round Africa has sailed,     The king has failed—but does […]