Ode to an Opportunist



Ode to an Opportunist

He calls me a broken record,
seems to wish I'd change my tune.

There's no "advantage" in it he says.
"Who else would take a chance on you?"

(I think he means their ratings would plunge
if they ran my latest series

on life's only reason for being.)
It's true enough, I suppose.

My decided lean towards eternal peace
I admit is somewhat at odds

with environmental preservationism.
Advocating taking life off the menu,

every species of it even,
down to the minutest form,

while the rest are all gung-ho
for keeping the kitchen popping out dishes

could conceivably cause some viewer defection.

Meanwhile, his broadcasts keep hitting it big
he keeps telling me—with a faint whiff of relish.

(He must have some Simon Barjona in him—
that fisher of men God chose as his stand-in.)

I should've been net-casting more I guess
talking less to myself when skirting the void.

I know the company's aim is full houses.
A church's success is gauged by its flock-size.

Still, that's a tough bill to fill in my case,
born as I was with zero knack

for religion, or business, or peddling my wares
(I've just never had a salesman's nature)

no dream of a nonstop Broadway run
nor of anything else you could call immortal.

(He tells me his broadcasts might go on and on.
While me, I'm just thinking why does he care.)

How many watch ghost shows I wonder.
(I've also wondered if they're funded by Baptists.)

Should I mix it up with phantasmic scenes?
The supernatural does have its snares.

But brainflash! UFOs could prove hypnotic!
A second! A troupe of divine derrieres!

The hint I'm picking up anyway
is the way to woo crowds is not by wishing

mother earth might someday soon
be mirroring the silvery moon,

be hanging aloft in the night-sky
lustrous as any white porcelain plate—

that it might be wiser, for the company's sake
(and maybe too for my own)

to take a break from outlandish dreams,
come up with more compelling themes,

focus more on audience bias,
play to their weakness, be a bit more resigned

to providing passable reproductions
of whatever entrances a fish's eye.

(I understand it's essential
to keep profits high.)

Am now thinking Married With Children—
a remake?

Or would nature's beauties work just as well
to glue a target-group's gaze?

Whad'd'u think?

Possibly violets, gardens, whatnot
could fasten pupils in as tight a headlock?

But this brings to mind a line
I misread the other night:—

"the breast covered with violets."
 Odd what I saw instead was "the beast

covered with violets"—
Perhaps my eye sometimes gets its kicks

by teasing my inner junkie
with the perfect fix.

Old habits and hopes die hard?
Might even cause optical confusions?

Or was it just my cataracts
making things look as they aren't?

But off to the races (The mad hatter crept!
Like Housman I wish I'd forever slept!)

Being wedded to fact has been holding me back.
I need some new angle to get me on track.

For god's sake stay tuned!
I swear I'll try to make you swoon—

maybe a remake of Happy Days?
At any rate you can safely assume

my wish for a lunar earth's been inhumed.
No more stars playing taps for a foodless globe.

You can bet you'll be having a lovely trip!
I'm building a brand new passenger ship!

Whatever it takes to get you on board!
(Only company men can count on a raise.)

But to end with my newfound jocular flair—
you'll be cast out, shunned, jailed or killed

if your view of what's right doesn't line up with theirs.
So beware. Their tolerance has a strict limit.

They'll hogtie you with interdictions.
(though cashcows can temper their taste for restrictions).

They were made to reproduce and gang up.
Mutual torture's their favorite hangup.

All were brought here to be sucked in
by the luscious lures of a treacherous host.

Most are seduced of course. The host's so compelling!
(It knows how to keep appendages swelling,

knows how to hide its omnivorous lust,
so well it's the god in whom you trust!)

Just recall I'm a broken record.
My only point has been to make clear

he's nailed it—
the proof is before you, right under your eyes.

He considers himself quite the whiz,
and this is to prove he is!

(The quintessence of every species of life
is disturbing the peace and promoting strife.)
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Submitted by parashootin on September 04, 2023

4:34 min read
39

Quick analysis:

Scheme A BC DE XX FX XX GE HG XI J XX GH XX IK XL MN JO XP NX XM XD XF CC QX RX SS XX TQ OQ JR XU XF XX VX VW XW XT XX XX LL XC UG AX YY BU PX MX DT ZZ HX FF 1 1 BX XK 2 2 3 3
Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 4,279
Words 877
Stanzas 56
Stanza Lengths 1, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 1, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2

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