[lit-ideas] Re: SUNDAY POEM

  • From: David Ritchie <ritchierd@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 4 Feb 2007 12:32:59 -0800

revisiting on tour
the famous and largely forgotten fall of the hat of Trim in "Tristram Shandy"
and exponentially considering
british glory in Sterne spirit thereafter

we come upon naval lords
who after considerable consultation
with pressure groups and such
drew up ships for hulks
wherein prisoners cohabiting with misery
would curse explosive dysentery

now compare well-plumbed modern lives wherein
hordes of heavy descendants under bright electric lights
get fit
lift weights into old age
bulk up
swim multiple laps for trim

half the british navy ships will soon stop
by decree because to pay further for knots
is too large a stretch
and in the wake of the canvas-wrapped old rum tot's
corpse we are left with arrangements of handy liver spots and fetching

sites where now on decks
risks which once demanded
pace enough to foil an enemy's aim
are subdued by rolling mists of rain
and brass indented paragraphs on glory

strained from genuine laurels
this is our barking inheritance tea
which jams upon the hour
to prove that somehow british power
remains ever green


David Ritchie,
Portland, Oregon

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