The Misfortune Teller ("Co-opted by the Conspiracy")

Co-opted by the Conspiracy
(From The Triumph of Strife: an homage to Dante Alighieri and Percy Shelley)

A vast conspiracy she said she saw
Of right-wing stink tanks, journalists, and worse
Determined to politicize the law

Abusing it to do things so perverse
That fascism – the word – no longer named
The crimes that Kenneth Starr would soon rehearse

Grand jury leaks like floods that falsely framed
Some “secret” testimony publicized
Each morning in the tabloid press that shamed

The TV commentators deputized
To do the deed for which they had been hired:
To titillate a public mesmerized

With lurid tales of blow jobs so inspired
That some form of impeachment was required

Régime change, yes, at least, had to occur
Lest presidents (frustration to dispel)
Would part the parsley; plug the patch of fur;

Or plow the furrow; dip into the well;
Or split the muffin of some maiden fair
Who promised she would swallow and not tell

If she could not get Johnson jammed “down there”
In only her “best friend” would she confide
A “secret” that her “friend” at once laid bare

To anyone her agent could provide
That promised fame and fortune to a fink
Who tape recorded phone calls on the side

Who needed both some lawyers and a shrink
To help her drive the country to the brink

Yet still the nut jobs had their day in court
With little else to do they did their worst
But managed to come up a little short

Which left their bogus bubble badly burst
And them to eat the crow that they had cooked:
The man who went in last had come out first

A possibility they’d overlooked
In their mad zeal to make of sex a crime
On their own barbs and worms had they been hooked

Which left them flopping, gasping in the slime
Of their own culpable excreted crap
Yet vowing to return another time

Which they have done, no less, in gown and cap
As graduates of one enormous flap

They got back in, they did, by changing tunes
Reactionary rhetoric had failed
“Conservatives” then read their rustic runes

And realized why citizens had quailed
At nasty Newt and all that he implied:
Those randy, rude Republicans who railed

At stars that shone and love that had not died
Then Ross Perot’s deserters came back home
Their ticket-splitting tactic cut and dried:

That if George Bush desired that they not roam
He would not shove their noses out of joint
Or do a thing to make their nostrils foam

Yet if he pandered, they would him anoint
Which message made it hard to miss the point

But let him stray one inch, he’d get the axe
Like daddy did when he said: “Read my lips!”
This meant, of course, that George would raise no tax

Although he would raise hackles with his quips
Like “Bring ‘em on!” to taunt those in Iraq
With whom his troops would have to come to grips

Each time that they repelled a new attack
Instead of promised flowers and parades
They wind up taking bullets in the back

While dodging IEDs and hand grenades
Or standing at attention in the sun
At photo opportunity charades

For one who’d never faced an angry gun,
Who wanted so to glory in the fun

Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright 2006