Friday, October 31, 2014

Like to Buy the Koch a World

Rumor has it

if you stop by the Koch mansion
in Wichita Kansas tonight

Charles and David themselves

(through many protective layers

of a highly advanced
and proprietary "working class repellent"

made from a composite
of natural and synthetic materials
from their massive subsidiaries

including plastics and petroleum
and asphalt
and chemicals

and energy and fibers
and minerals

and fertilizers
which is the "natural" part)

will tell you
some of the best stories
about the ghosts
of American democracy.

But you'll have to stop by
the Sedgwick County
Democratic Party Headquarters

if you want any candy.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Mandatory Quran-tine


looks like Bill Maher

is keeping it too "Real"
this "Time"
for students of UC Berkeley

who don't want him giving
the December commencement address

due to comments
on an October 3rd show

in which he
spoke against religion in general
and Islam in particular

saying "the Muslim world
has too much in common with Isis"

and that the "values"
of "Western Civilization"
"are better."

The students' petition
has collected more than
2,800 signatures

from irate Muslims
and non-Muslims.

Religions are not inherently
violent or peaceful

but powerful vehicles through which people
filter their own consciences

and those with power
can and do justify oppressive acts

(which Maher should know
since he said it himself).

Irreverent reality-based satirists
(such as this poet
except when breaking
into fanciful song)

attempt to skewer
the abuse of power
in America

(and yes
around the world)

with the imprecise tool of humor
and a tool it is

but one doesn't make allies
of the Others

in a country
where the Other

must pass airport security checks
(which he has
voiced his approval of)

ask to be humanized
and then finally apologize

to the "us"
in "us and them"

when as Americans
they seek to be included
in an American conversation.

Surely a person
who once said

"Curious people
are interesting people"

and who prides himself
on bullshit detection
can see through his own

(though one shouldn't
make unfair generalizations).

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Let the Sun Shine In

Today at 6:41 PM
Eastern Daylight Time

Active Region 2192
on the surface of the Sun

erupted with another
X-Class flare
directed towards Earth.

Registering at level X1

it was weaker than
Friday's X3 flare.

Blackouts were reported

but there were no
coronal mass ejections

(or CMEs
for those in the know).

However Fox News
is now on alert

with their ongoing coverage
under the aforementioned

(and very subtle
as is their way)

"Blackout" name

as they believe Obama
is making a last-ditch effort
to usher in the Age of Aquarius

and bypassing Congress
to get it.

They are wrong

but kudos to them
for the suggestion

as such a plan would likely
be more effective.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Never Monkey with the Truth

Ben Bradlee

the Washington Post editor
who resided over the paper's
reporting on Watergate

which led to the retirement
of the sitting president
Richard M. Nixon

showed the country
that "news" is one of the good
four-letter words

and "journalism"
one of the vital "-isms"

in a world plagued
by so many bad ones.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Terms for the Surrender

On this day
in 1781
British General Cornwallis

surrenders at Yorktown Virginia

marking the end
of the Revolutionary War.

On this day in 1870

the first four African-Americans
are elected
to the House of Representatives.

(Took them long enough.)

On this day in 1960

MLK is arrested
in an Atlanta sit-in.

(Only because they knew
it was putting
his health at risk.)

In 1987

the Dow Jones
goes down 508.32 points

four-and-a-half times worse
than the drop in points

that marked the beginning
of the Great Depression
in 1929.

In 2003
Communist Mother Teresa is beatified

by Pope John Paul II.

Two years later
Saddam Hussein

(how else
to explain the delay?)

is put on trial
for crimes against humanity.

Famous birthdays include
South Park creator
Trey Parker

and former
Republican National Committee Chairman
Michael Steele

who showed his true colors
when he became a political analyst


There are no
conspiracy theories here
only facts

and Obama has 823 days
(with digits adding up
to the number 13)
left in office

and 12 days
till Halloween

which is plenty of time
for him to finish his spell

and let these disparate facts
(2,097 days in the making)
speak for themselves.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Fan Service

For a brief summary
of the state of political discourse
in the United States

go to last night in Florida
when Republican Governor Rick Scott

refused to take the stage 

to debate attorney
and former Governor Charlie Crist 

(first Republican
then Independent
then Dear Leader Obama Workers' Party)

for seven minutes
because Crist

had a small electric fan
under his podium.

Crist doesn't like
to be seen in public sweating

whether it's on
a trade mission to Europe

or even in his own yard
playing football.

Scott pointed to debate rules
that specified no electronics
were to be used

including fans
and rules are rules

but there is such a thing
as following "the letter of the law
but not the spirit"

perhaps less trivially so
when during the debate

Crist suggested amending
the Stand Your Ground law

by stating
"to end up killing
another human being

after they started the incident

there is something fundamentally
wrong with that law"

to which Scott responded
that Trayvon Martin's death
was "tragic"

but that the law
should remain as it is.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Kimming the Surface

Proud North Koreans
and in fact
the world

welcomed back the celebrity couple
"Kim Jong-Ego"

as he reappeared in public view
for the first time
since September 3

when he was reported
to have attended a concert.

The main party newspaper
Rodong Sinmun

says everything is fine

(except perhaps a leg injury

since there were photos
of him carrying a cane

while showing off
a new apartment complex
to senior military people)

so speculation
of internal party turmoil
shall now cease

if in fact
it ever existed at all.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Friday, October 10, 2014

To Be Rather than to Seem

North Carolina's
ban on gay marriage lifted.
God says, "No comment."

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Gay Old Times

"We the People
of Strict Specified Criteria"
(who until recently
have happened to overlap
the "democratic-we"

also known as
"enfranchised and empowered Americans")

are good
at holding stubbornly
to the old

and eventually
accepting the new
as a foregone conclusion.

Still too slowly
(for those who wait)

but soon
the unthinkable

will become
the commonplace.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Synod Capsule

Pope Francis has called
a rare gathering
of bishops
and lay Catholics in Rome

(also known as Catholics
who face no
workplace restrictions upon

and whom are permitted
if not by God

then by 
a sinful society

to engage in "laying")

to debate the Church's attitudes
towards divorce
contraception and gayness.

He doesn't want anybody
getting any "beautiful and clever ideas"

or "to see who is more intelligent"
at this Synod assembly

but rather
to engage in "real debate"

which of course
is no fun.

Still sometimes
"keeping it real"

for all that could
be said against it

does make real things change.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Mecc-ing A Crisis

Dear Fox News

it's unlikely that by now
five days shy
of your eighteenth anniversary

you would still need
a brush-up
on the basic journalism technique

of reporting
on events

that actually exist
in reality

but just in case

if you see two million Muslims

streaming into
a sprawling tent city
near Mecca
in Saudia Arabia

in preparation
for their holy five-day hajj

this is not ISIS.

You didn't need
to hear that

but thank you for your time.

This poem © 2014 Emily Cooper.