Belvedere by Mari Fitzpatrick

Your iPod thunders Dizzy Gillespie.
Lying on Lilliput's shore you shut your eyes
to see yahoos jive on caramel-colored sands.
Dreaming of Gulliver, his folly and modest proposal you wake to ink poems--
those which no rule can cultivate.

Swift said that the very fabric of society depends upon trust,
so dishonesty may be even more damaging than theft and violence.
Back in the seventeen twenties, in his land, landlords had their chains jerked.
It was good to have the Saxon to blame.

You dream diversion for it is a Lenten abstinence from pubs
and you have given up booze, smokes and treats until the seventeenth.
You ask Swift: "in your time did woodcutters paint floats or wear galoshes
as they marched for self-indulgence or was St Patrick a Catholic back then?"

The Dean of St. Patrick's is annoyed at being disturbed.

"Yes, but you suggested we eat our children." You say in your defence.
"Rather that, than let them starve," he replies.
"What would you suggest we do now?" You ask.
"Can you make a roux?"
"A roux?" You're disconcerted with his reply.
"A coating sauce!" Hmmm...’ you wonder what he's playing at.
"Well, cook them in that on a slow heating stove..."
"They don't starve anymore." You snap.

With eyebrows raised: "my time has gone," is all he says as he leaves your dream and you sit-up on your carpet of moss searching shrouds which drift in mist, searching to find him again and you do, and suddenly he is there in front of you asking.

"Is St. Patrick really a Catholic now?"
"It is our time." You say as you smile and beckon him closer for his distance is your now.
"So Maeve lost out to Rome?" He questions.
"No, Maeve lost out to St. Patrick, Rome lost out to sex."
He turns to leave. Again, you call to him.
"We put on shows!"
"Put on…?" He echoes, stops.
"Like the Lilliputians, we recognize names, wealth
and our politicians walk tightropes, turn tricks."
"You wear the mantle of governors!"

"But our governors are not Houyhnhnms," you reflect
and you hear his laugh drift through time
as your iPod thunders Dizzy Gillespie
where there on Belvedere shore you dream of diversion.

Mari '07

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