Max Reif

Rookie - 58 Points (1948 / OVER 400 POEMS SERVED! !)

Beware The Ring Of Power - Poem by Max Reif

Should we feel surprise
when the public-spirited
words of our leaders belie
their smudged fingerprints,
seemingly left

in some shadowy game
as though there are two governments,
one affirming ideals,
the other cutting deals?

It all seem to show one thing —
someone's put on the ring of power
and it has a life of its own.

Remember the Nixon tapes?
Did you feel a kind of thrill
to learn the President
had feet of clay —
peppering his talk
with 'Jew this' and 'Jew that'
and a whole soup of obscenities?

Now Karl Rove
seems to be running
a cabal to try to turn
our government's machine
to partisan ends.

The same pattern
appeared, at least,
through the filters
of many Republican eyes,
with only the names different,
during the Clinton years.

Something in us longs
to see our so-called leaders
as fallible as those of us
whose innocent personae
hide every kind of secret.

But behind the stage
of the public drama
eternal values wait like gods,
not so much
desiring to ensnare us,
but simply Present
in the grid of existence.

Aristotle told us long ago
the message of the downfall
of a Hamlet, or a Nixon, or,
should it be, a Bush —

look to yourself!

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Roald Dahl


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Poem Submitted: Thursday, March 22, 2007

Poem Edited: Saturday, February 5, 2011

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