. The Poet's Beat .

. The Poet's Beat .
"A working class citizen is apt to see this country for what it's worth... A miasma of interlocking variations on differing demographics and geographies unlike any other inhabited space in the world. The American Dream. The rolling footloose hills and the upstanding Apache badlands where criminals cut bread with priests and the children of Hollywood. I am no different. Yet I am still brazen enough to think that the world is a playground built by the rugged hands of a hard-working man in order that my fantasies be materialized." -- P.P. Vonnersdale

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sweet France, Her Glory Gone

If you are a sincere loyalist of the French-speaking peoples of France, this poem may not be for you. Written in 2003, at the apparent height of some pseudo-anti-French rebellion in the depths of my soul, this poem was as much a tribute to those pencil-thin mustachio'd men and long-fingered cigarette-smoking women of the land of the original romantic language as it was a satire on the elusive, uncomfortable and ignorantly unquestioned antithetical position most Americans had about those foreign shores. Long life French Fries! Long live poetry! Enjoy...


A thousand Franks will die tonight.
And a thousand more tomorrow.
A million tears from Chirac’s eyes.
His noble land in sorrow.
Romantic France has smiled her last.
Corruption’s at her gate.
The Keys to Paris are in my hands.
Her children shant again be safe.
My hounds are poised o’er the kill.
Their dark eyes set on Toulon and Nice.
The destruction of these towns –
Small meals for hungry beasts.

In lovely Dijon
The criminals dance in the street.
In the wake of my passing
No thing will remain but their feet.
All sewers will be clogged.
All toilets will overflow.
I will ride in on a blackened turd
And not a soul shall know.

The pillars of Lyon will fall.
And tomorrow Le Mons will burn.
A thousand Franks stand atop those pillars.
In Le Mon, a thousand more will take their turn.
If the rats are to follow the Piper
Than Death is to follow behind me.
From the nuts in all the nut-houses
To the squirrels in all the trees.

I’ll unpave the roads in Montpellier.
And leave gravel in my wake.
I’ll crush those lovely southern mountains
And dry up all the lakes.
I’ll make a mockery of Strasbourg.
Nearby Germany will cough and laugh.
I’ll strip the women of their clothing
And deny them two week’s worth of baths.
I’ll shave the beardless children –
Those spokesmen for their beloved France.
I’ll unleash an insanely rattled Kevin Bacon
And crown him the King of Dance.

Oh, dear old Jacques,
Will you ever set things straight?
Will you convince your aging wife
To lose a bit of weight?
This lucid battle cry an overblown epic
Intended to stir your souls.
Sweet France has dug herself
Into one too many holes.

Poor Clermont-Ferrand will fall.
It’s sister, Saint-Etienne, shall too.
Woe to the tears of France.
What else was I supposed to do?
Her fish have bellied up.
Her snails have gone on strike.
And now like an ex-American patriot
I’ll do whatever the hell I like.
Listen for my echo in the mountain pass.
Give breath to the silent word.
Keep a sincere vigil on your porcelain rims.
Watch out for the blackened turd.

12.2003


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