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Amazing text from Ambrose Bierce !!

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Halevy Posted: Sat, May 24 2008 8:55 PM

Hi Austrian folks,

I've just found this "pearl" from the American writer Ambrose Bierce, known for his cynical and acid style, and also for being an extreme critic of the State.

Some parts of this poetry could have been written today, so fresh are the subjects. It's also amazing how Bierce was able to condense in a few words such quantity of "hot" issues.

I hope you'll enjoy this text.

Kind regards from Rio,

R. Halevy.

==================================

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914?)

 

The Statesmen

 

How blest the land that counts among

Her sons so many good and wise,

To execute great feats of tongue

When troubles rise.

 

Behold them mounting every stump,

By speech our liberty to guard.

Observe their courage--see them jump,

And come down hard!

 

"Walk up, walk up!" each cries aloud,

"And learn from me what you must do

To turn aside the thunder cloud,

The earthquake too.

 

"Beware the wiles of yonder quack

Who stuffs the ears of all that pass.

-I alone can show that black

Is white as grass."

 

They shout through all the day and break

The silence of the night as well.

They'd make--I wish they'd go and make--

Of Heaven a Hell.

 

A advocates free silver, B

Free trade and C free banking laws.

Free board, clothes, lodging would from me

Win warm applause.

 

Lo, D lifts up his voice: "You see

The single tax on land would fall

On all alike." More evenly

No tax at all.

 

"With paper money," bellows E,

"We'll all be rich as lords." No doubt--

And richest of the lot will be

The chap without.

 

As many "cures" as addle-wits

Who know not what the ailment is!

Meanwhile the patient foams and spits

Like a gin fizz.

 

Alas, poor Body Politic,

Your fate is all too clearly read:

To be not altogether quick,

Nor very dead.

 

You take your exercise in squirms,

Your rest in fainting fits between.

'Tis plain that your disorder's worms--

Worms fat and lean.

 

Worm Capital, Worm Labor dwell

Within your maw and muscle's scope.

Their quarrels make your life a Hell,

Your death a hope.

 

God send you find not such an end

To ills however sharp and huge!

God send you convalesce! God send

You vermifuge.

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