Some Cruel Epigrams in the Roman Style

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I wrote these poems inspired by Catullus and Martial as a freshman at Harvard. Their wit is mean-spirited but sharp, like the Roman originals, and the collection as a whole is meant to be taken light-heartedly. I apologize if anyone finds these vulgar or offensive; the poems are juvenile, but there’s something about them which makes me smile.

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Dear Neighbors

This school being Harvard, why do you still need this warning?

Turn your fucking music off at night and in the morning!

We’ve begged and we have pleaded, but our efforts are discarded.

You’re either quite forgetful or you’re either quite retarded.

***

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On Jason

Jason is a sportsman boasting muscles taut with power

and recently has taken up cavorting in the shower.

I couldn’t help but notice that you recently smell clean,

But humping girls in common baths is dirty, low and mean.

We do not want, oh Hercules, to bathe ourselves in sperm,

So find another puddle when your pants begin to squirm.

With any luck you’ll meet a partner worthy of your class,

An inchworm longer than your dick who’ll crawl right up your ass.

***

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On Jonathan

You creep in rooms, dear Jonathan, and vanish into air,

but tragically, you lanky sneak, your stench proves that you’re there.

They say that you are part giraffe, but I say that it’s foolish,

for while they only sport black tongues, the whole of you is ghoulish.

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On Trisha

I hear that you sport hairy legs, just one of many fibs.

Your legs are smooth, but not the slime that clings against your ribs.

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On Patrick

Patrick hasn’t got a chin, but when it comes to farts

that fellow’s stench has all the power of a pygmy’s darts.

His new girlfriend, Evangeline, is always where he goes,

for while he hasn’t got a chin, she hasn’t got a nose.

***

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On Erica

Erica is fetching as she paints her luscious lips,

fetching as a dog with hairy jowls and giant hips.

Why spend so much time applying makeup to your face?

It’s all to no avail, since your buck teeth smell of mace.

***

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On Robert

You’re always late to section and your questions waste our time.

In my eyes you’re nothing more than pock marks greased with slime.

***

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To the Dancing Woman at the Club

Dancing to the rhythm of the music is an art,

but not when you’re a floozy over fifty and a tart

whose partner is a pumpkin who can only move his back.

Your dancing isn’t dancing, but a rhythmic heart attack.

 

 

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So That It Burns

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Upon the cusp of evening shade suffused

with rays of twilight sleek and luminous

my love lingers beyond the ashen span

which glistens on the bed of Tithonus.

As summers wane and dusk invidious

imbues the wilting arch of firmament,

so equally my nimble ardor swells

to drench the stars, gleaming and permanent.

When autumn showers form a breathless mist

which clings upon the face of cobblestones,

the lovestruck poet should not hope to list

what nature and imagination loan.

He drafts within his heart unspoken songs

of boundless pitch which no page could abide,

when transient moments grow a bit more long

and deathless beauty walks along his side.

These subtle metamorphoses run deep

inside our souls before we get too old,

when kindred hearts both skip a single beat

and friendly glances grow a bit more bold.

But little else is crueler to discern

than gusty changes once their course has run,

that fan a feeble heart so that it burns,

but blow out fire in the other one.