Occasional light verse, mostly political. If you're looking for a certain cold medicine, try here. But we can put you to sleep cheaper.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

painless for whom?

No humor today. Many recent news stories on the death penalty, and the possible cruelty of the use of lethal injection, which may be true but is irrelevant (see below). The death penalty needs to be taken on frontally, not sideways, and on the basis of what it does to all of us, not to the convicted.

The most completely painless way
To execute a man
Was practiced long before the day
It got its name and its cachet
From Dr. Guillotin.

Our needle brings a worse demise,
So anyone who delves
Into its use will realize
The ones we would anaesthetize
Must be ourselves.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

ah bliss

Sure, the news is bad.
But, cheer up. It could be verse.

Should have been our motto, but it belongs to the great Gene Weingarten, as he does news poems professional-style in this week's Post.

guest blogger: Charles Lutwidge Dodgson

Dodgson (Lewis Carroll), while at Oxford, wrote a poem entitled "The Deserted Parks", protesting the conversion of Oxford parkland to cricket fields. His social criticism expanded into what seems to us an idictment of the effects of wealth generated by an economy based on easy money, bubbles, and finance. Remarkable that this was 1867, not today. The excerpt:

...Ye friends to truth, ye statesmen, who survey
The rich man's joys increase, the poor's decay,
'Tis yours to judge, how wide the limits stand
Between a splendid and a happy land.
Proud swells go by with laugh of hollow joy,
And shouting Folly hails them with "Ahoy!"
Funds even beyond the miser's wish abound,
And rich men flock from all the world around.
Yet count our gains. This wealth is but a name,
That leaves our useful products still the same.
Not so the loss ...

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Three short variations on a theme

It can't be pleasant
To have Dick Cheney treat you like a pheasant.

One Middle East dictator
Has seen the drill: "shoot first, explain it later."

Scalia had some luck.
Picture him in that robe -- and then a duck.

Friday, February 03, 2006

a tribute to Odd-Even Bustnes

Today, no bitterness -- only joy! The New York Times' analysis of President Bush's energy policy (don't get me started) included a quote from energy conservation and efficiency expert Odd-Even Bustnes.
Click on his bio above to read about his extraordinary life.....or just read on.

Odd-Even Bustnes! Here's an ode
To everything you are, and do,
But mostly to your name, of course,
Which must remain the best of you,
Despite the fact that once you rowed
Olympically for native Norway,
Or that you rose to be a force
In oil use and conservation,
Serving your adopted nation,
And more than this, you did it YOUR way--

Never mind the mountain peaks
You've scaled right to the very tops;
Never mind the many weeks
You spent in Norway's Special Ops;
Never mind the way you dwell
In spots like Swaziland, Peru,
And Zambia (I bet you'd tell
A pretty dashing tale or two,
And groupies swear there is no cuter
Rocky Mountain Instituter!).

Great the gifts with which you're blessed,
Both by nurture and by nature,
But your parents gave the best
With their gift of nomenclature.
Yet when Bustnes tykes emerge,
Don't make them schoolyard cannon-fodder:
Grit your teeth and fight the urge
To name them something Even-Odder.


Take my kidding with good grace,
It comes from one whose name lacks fizz --
Is so profoundly commonplace,
His friends forget just who he is.