Friday, September 27, 2013

Happy Birthday, T. S.

Happy Birthday, T. S. Eliot!

For those who complain about his seriousness, who read "The Waste Land," "Ash Wednesday," or "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" and complain about the Latin allusions and the references to myths no one remembers, let me tell you Eliot had a sense of humor, and a love for practical jokes and buffoonery.

A couple of years ago I wrote a poem called "the love song of t. s. eliot" based on a real incident in his life.

The Love Song of T. S. Eliot 

His new false teeth made it hard
For him to speak the French
He wanted to whisper to her,
Those lines from Baudelaire,
That always touched him so,
Lines about the light love creates,

So Eliot took the teeth out
And gummed his Baudelaire
Until she begged him to stop,
Her tears rolling through
Her laughter but he wouldn’t.

He just kept spitting out vowels
Vibrating them with his slippery
Red gums and mulish laughter.
The poem originally appeared in Mayday Magazine.

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