Poems of the Week

Mors the Pity

by Julia Griffin

“Square where Julius Caesar was killed will open to public in Rome
Tourists in the city will be able to examine the spot where the Roman dictator
was said to have been murdered … [The area is] also home to a sanctuary for stray cats.”
The Guardian

Guests, tourists, foreigners: direct your phones
Towards these planks where buried Caesar bled.
This walkway rests upon his hallowed bones
(Or would, had Rome not burned them up instead).
We come, in any case, to praise, not bury:
He was well worth those euros you have paid;
You can, if you’re imaginative (very),
See what a rent the envious Casca made!
And please remember Cassius, that traitor:
And “honourable” Brutus, what a snake—
I’m sorry, no, there is no elevator,
But look, before we take a bathroom break:
Here was a photo opp! You’re surely smitten;
And if you’re bored with Caesar, here’s a kitten.