Verses Dispersed And Washed In The Cobalt Of Oblivions; or, Catered Macaroons

[an imitation of the first section of Ezra Pound's

poem, Hugh Selwyn Mauberly]


"My Gawd, them Cockney voices . . ."
---Ezra Pound, in a radio review of a broadcast of

T. S. Eliot's play, Murder In The Cathedral


My sentences

their order changed;

it did sound old

(or sounded strange).


I did take pride,

or I was proud

in rhymes aslant,

spread all around.


My quill I did

take up to pen

the how and why,

what, where, and when.


When I but write

in mood made callow,

jackboots fit tight,

jacked mind fits shallow.


My ear does fill

with chirps of birds

at marbled pools

where they drop turds.


My friend once did

post lines each morning;

by evening came

his readers' scorning.


Two lovers said---

cute college boys---

that my best style

really annoys;


my poems drove them

their shoes to put

on who strolled camp-

us lawns barefoot.


Reading my poems,

their shoes they keep

on, for they say

I spread crap deep,


Other remarks,

theirs I will mention

not, but still count

such as attention.


Though I am now

an old cornpone,

I still exult

that I am known.


I stir my tea

will silver spoons,

then say my prayer

to Gott Mit Uns.


Morning will start

with goose-stepped stomp,

then one page read

out of Mein Kampf.

Author's Notes/Comments: 
Part of the title is a quotation of Pound's poem, cited supra, part iv.  The alternate title, "Catered Macaroons," arose from my own misread of one of Pounds lines in the source poem.

The epigraph, from Pound's broadcast review of the first broadcast of Eliot's play, was ethnically uncouth, even cruel; and is affixed here to make further mockery of the poem's speaker.  I cannot cite a source for it; the words were conveyed in an open lecture during the Eliot Seminar I attended during the first term of my Junior year at that place I aint surposed to menchen, collage.  It was one of my chief takeaways for that course. 

In my poem, I have tried to break as many rules as I could think of, in order to demonstrate the kind of poems I dislike.  Sentence inversion, present tense verbs preceded by "did," and slant or incomplete rhymes are chief items among the several I hoped to include in this.


The poem is a parody of Ezra Pound.  To avoid a MisRead, let me state categorically that no member of the postpoems community is being here parodied, criticized, or imitated.  My quarrel is with Ezra Pound, and I doubt hr gives a tinker's dime.  I have tried to give the speaker an implied tripled sound:  Cornpone American, Imperisal British, and Fascist---all of which influenced Pound.  The speaker may be a Rightser, too; shucks, I don't know.

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patriciajj's picture

A thoroughly enjoyable romp

A thoroughly enjoyable romp for anyone who has ever been annoyed by those poetic abominations. Clever, light-hearted and scathing, it was the perfect antidote to the drivel passed off as "classic". 

Starward's picture

Thank you.  I was reading

Thank you.  I was reading some of Stevens' early stuff tonight, and I had forgotten how much of it was actually parody of styles he did not like.  But I am so glad you liked this one.