Saturday, January 14, 2017

Present imperfect

   In the season of the scowl
   upon which we'll be launch-
   ed Friday at noon, an occa-
   sion arises for reflection
   on its origin as a kind of
   affectation of social posi-

My kingdom for a flatterer

           Or, really,
           anyone at all
           who'll play
           with me.

  Pay enough,
  you can al-
  ways dredge
  up yourself.

Damon Winter
Kellyanne Conway
The New York Times, 2017©

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The whole damn ranch

                                  Elsewhere Anchises,
          Fatherly and intent, was off in a deep green valley
          Surveying and reviewing souls consigned there,
          Those due to pass to the light of the upper world.
          It so happened he was just then taking note
          Of his whole posterity, the destinies and doings,
          Traits and qualities of descendants dear to him,
          But seeing Aeneas come wading through the grass
          Towards him, he reached his two hands out
          In eager joy, his eyes filled up with tears
          And he gave a cry: 
                             At last! Are you here at last?
          I always trusted that your sense of right

  Book VI 
  916 et seq.
op. posth.  
ca 29-19 BC
Seamus Heaney
op. posth.
Faber & Faber, 2016©


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

So as not to scare the horses

In these days,
I'm not out to
diminish my an-
ger. But, I am
out to sustain
my sympathies.

In farming, we
style congress
as a covering.

I come before you today as a colleague who has worked with you for years, and with some of you for 20 years. You know who I am. You know what I believe in. You know that I am a man of my word and can be trusted to do what I say I will do. You know that I revere our Consti-tution and am committed to the rule of law. And you know that I believe in fairness, impartiality, and equal jus-tice under the law.

         Oh, Oscar? Where did
         we put your nice por-
         trait of Mister Gray?
         There's his authentic
         rent boy at the door,
         counting on our being
         Edwardianly discreet.

The Nominee for
  Attorney General
Statement to the Senate
January 9, 2017

i    Christo
      Project for a 
        Wrapped Island
      South Pacific Ocean

iii  Michael Salerno, photo

Monday, January 9, 2017

One's pattern

In the last week or two I've
been repairing lacunae in my
table settings, the kind of
thing a bachelor is natural-
ly the last to notice, until
he can't have friends in to
dinner anymore. It turns out
that one's pattern is still
in production, if not in vo-
gue, and this has kept me on
the line with a French firm's
representative in New York.

What's made this risky busi-
ness these days is our next
régime's penchant of hacking
communications to expose the
people of sanity in our na-
tion. It was bad enough, to
be dealing with France for
fish knives, and spoons for
vichyssoise. But what surely
cost me my rating at their
club must have been my reli-
ance upon the good advice of
a female, much less of Arab
descent, and less still of
Muslim heritage. 

She was unfailingly helpful 
in reminding me of requis-
ites of service of my tastes 
to my friends, and posed in
this way some threat to the 
foundations of our security.

But they've said the same
thing of wives and sisters
of everyone who's listened,
and now demand a Department
of Justice committed to in-

is an exertion of affection. 
For aiding mine, I thank her.