The American Precedent
(to the tune of “I Have Dreamed,” from The King and I)
I have schemed to despoil and pillage.
I have launched Shock and Awe campaigns.
I have bombed every town and village
That would not – and gladly – wear the empire’s chains.
What a thrill to observe the rubble
Where once houses lined the streets.
Fields of grain now a blackened stubble
Signs of our predictable trademark defeats.
In these nightmares you will see
What has long-since come to be:
Ugly Truth revealed by night and day.
Still, you seek to turn your eyes away.
I have lied just to keep in practice;
Just so I wouldn’t lose my touch.
Even though no one has attacked us,
I insist that someone “bad” did such-and-such.
In these nightmares I’ll appear
As a barking-mad King Lear:
What I’ll give you ‘cause you would not kneel.
You deserve a “life” beneath my heel.
Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright © 2022