Scoundrel Time

Two Poems By Virginia Beards

Song for the Camo Girls and Boys

“You know in Africa no woman ever misses her lion and no white man ever bolts.”

-The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber, Ernest Hemingway


They grin from ear to ear
In camo artfully splotched
For grinning from ear to ear
Above a twisted corpse.

Goldilocks in post-slaughter bliss,
lolls beside a crumpled giraffe.
Camo triumphant, oh glorious day,
She grins from ear to ear.

A hunt camp litany of ask-receive—
Elephant, rhino, wildebeest, lion,
Impala, warthog, kudu and buff.
Walk upwind, spot ‘n’ stalk,
Sting him good, check him off.
Sleep with a smile from ear to ear.

Pleased as punch, the khaki boys
Replay the Springfield’s blam and whunk,
Rifles propped for the photo op,
Above a grey belly and twisted trunk.
The trophy head and bragging rights
Shore-up their gleeful mantra—

Shoot for the bone, send it home…
And grin from ear to ear.


Post-truth Discourse

2016 entry, Oxford English Dictionary: objective facts less influential in sharing public opinion

 than appeals to emotion


no one asks about the “it.”
So the huge-it’s-gonna-be-great
gets dragged through the gate,
the Greeks pour out and flash goes Troy.
Hags in the woods screech
promise, cajole, beseech.
Baptized by bombast and blood lust,
the Thane of Cawdor converts
and summarily snuffs out a dynasty.

That “it” joined at the hip
with the vaguest of verbs
spumes and spews false claims,
lethal adjectives, and siren calls.
The “huge-it’s-gonna-be-great” con triumphs
in the Post-truth swamp, and the O.E.D.


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