Poems of the Week

Bucking the Trend

by Ruth S. Baker

“Pound tumbles to two-year low as stagflation fears rise”
The Guardian

Throughout the whole Stag Nation,
Tall antlers shake with fear;
This influx of mutation
Means all will soon be dear.

Netted

by Stephen Gold

Former tennis star “Boris Becker jailed for two years for hiding assets after bankruptcy”
The Guardian

A man of many faces,
Who bumbled into crime,
Once famed for serving aces,
Is now just serving time.

His shot at expiation
Was hit with too much spin,
And hence his new location,
No longer OUT! but IN!

The moral of this folly?
When candor falls so short,
One can expect a volley,
In quite a different court.

What A Show!

by Julia Griffin

“A United Airlines passenger was taken into custody Thursday morning at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport
after opening an aircraft door and walking out onto the wing of the plane while it was taxiing.”
CNN

I hate to produce such a scare,
But waiting I just cannot bear;
So I pushed through a door
(That is what they are for),
Comin’ in on a wing at O’Hare.

Row, Wade, Drown

by Nora Jay

“Bombshell Leak: Supreme Court Set to Overturn Roe v. Wade”
Daily Beast

It must be born. That’s it, in few:
The content of the leak is true.
This isn’t illness, so you may
Get back to work without delay,
Or you can quit. It’s up to you.

Why should expenditure accrue
To your employer? Will you sue
To do no work and still have pay?
It must be born.

You should have thought the whole thing through
Before you (Biblically) knew
The father—what is that you say?
You’re fourteen and his daughter? Pray,
That’s our advice. So long. Adieu.
It must be born.

Higher Education

by Clyde Always

“Investigators say [a student] got a hold of some marijuana edibles at home and brought them
to school. The child shared them with other students, causing more than 15 to become ill at
school on Friday.”
ABC News

Stoner kids
in all my classes
come to school
baked off their asses!
Easy, now,
have you forgotten?
We, as teens,
were just as rotten.
Teens you say?
I beg your pardon—
I’m in charge
of Kindergarten!

The Way They Were

by Bruce Bennett

“Anglo-Saxon Kings Made Sure to Eat Their Vegetables, Study Shows”
The New York Times

Egbert, Aethelwulf, that crew
ate the same as me and you.
Though they craved some special dish,
they didn’t always get their wish.

Though at holidays their feasts,
like our own, were filled with beasts,
ordinary days they’d eat
vegetables instead of meat.

Hollywood had got it wrong.
Royals, large and loud and strong,
gorging out on what they’d please?
No, they ate their beans and peas.

Maybe scenes should be reshot?
Focus on the fork and pot.
Show how they were just like us,
nibblers on asparagus.

Think of how our kids would gape.
No more sword fights, orgies, rape!
Peaceful men in quiet rooms,
smiling, as they ate legumes.

In The Bag (or, The In Bag)

by Steven Kent

“KFC’s £198 Twister holder touted as next It bag—except among vegans”
The Guardian

Chanel, Hermes, Vuitton, and Prada—
Handbags I’ll have none of, nada.
So long Coach, goodbye to Fendi;
Now a brand-new name is trendy.
Who’s the hottest? Fashion branders,
Listen up: It’s Colonel Sanders.

Must-Haves

by Dan Campion

“Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ shirt fetches $9.3M at auction, a sports memorabilia record”
NPR

When soccer feels the “Hand of God,”
Though cloth is cheap as dirt,
Trust auctioneers. They’ll wink and nod
And sell the blessèd shirt.

The News in Oohs

by Iris Herriot

“Three-legged dog with cancer saves baby otter in Minnesota river drama”
The Guardian

If you don’t love a three-legged dog with cancer,
You don’t deserve the title of a man, sir,
And if your heart is cold to baby otters,
You rank among this generation’s rotters.
(About the rivers, though, of Minnesota,
No gentleman need bother one iota.)

Hot Scoop

by Brian Allgar

“Amber Heard Claims Putting Poop in Johnny Depp’s Bed Was a ‘Horrible Practical Joke,’
Employee Testifies”

Us Weekly

Oh, let it not be said that Amber Heard
For Johnny Depp just doesn’t give a turd.

Goospeak

by Clyde Always

“Google is pausing a controversial ‘inclusive language’ feature that …
proposes gender-neutral alternatives to words like ‘policeman’ or ‘housewife’
in a manner similar to the way that other software services correct spelling and grammar issues.”
The Washington Times

I’m here to confirm the new headlines are true:
although they’re still tracking near all that you do,
Google, no longer, will seek to eschew
words of the gender-specific taboo.
They also have scrapped
this slogan most apt:
“BIG SIBLING IS WATCHING YOU!”

Behold the Monst(e)rance

by Alex Steelsmith

Vladimir Putin “attended an Easter mass conducted by the Russian Orthodox Church… (He) stood to one side… holding a lit red candle,… crossed himself several times during the ceremony… (and) joined the other members of the congregation” in prayer.
Reuters

Jiggery-pokery,
Putin the slaughterer
holding a candle and
praying? Egad!

Many a monster of
Mephistophelian
infamy can’t hold a
candle to Vlad.

Doubledy-troubledy
Putin the slaughterer,
tyrant who rules at a
terrible cost,

trying his best to seem
unhypocritical,
crossed himself—and, to be
sure, double-crossed.

Uber-Stupid

by Steven Kent

“Capitol Rioter Caught After FBI Finds Recording of Him Boasting to Uber Driver”
The Guardian

Hey buddy, I don’t mean to boast,
But history was made today!
And in the future I can say
I served where I was needed most.

A Minuteman, to be real blunt,
Might look and act a lot like me.
I strode with purpose valiantly
When I got summoned to the front.

We knew our chance would soon be gone;
The time had come to fight like men.
We smashed our way inside and then—
Hey buddy, is that camera on?

Growing Minds

by Julia Griffin

“Bigger classes? Yes, but pupils have got bigger too, say UK teachers
Union delegates say walking into class is like entering the land of the giants”
The Guardian

I press my shirt, I pack my bag,
I clasp my parking pass,
And off I set for Brobdingnag
To teach my morning class.

A kindly pupil picks me up
And sets me on my chair;
Another lifts my coffee cup,
With admirable care.

I thank them (through my megaphone),
Then raise my yard of chalk
And write a quiz (which means, I own,
A rather dusty walk).

They rarely sulk or answer back:
They fear to make an F;
And thus they’re careful not to snack
On chips that make me deaf.

What souvenirs (conceive the size)
I’ll have when I retire!
—Though when I do, I will advise
A somewhat higher hire.