“The Discreet Charm of the Oligarchy” – Poetry by Claudia Zander

detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights - Hieronynous Bosch, circa 1515
detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights – Hieronymus Bosch, circa 1515

Should you care for an early taste of our Fall 2016 issue, please enjoy Claudia Zander‘s “The Discreet Charm of the Oligarchy.”

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STOP! THIEVES! THEY’RE PLAGIARIZING MY BOILERPLATES!
Come back with my clichés, those’re priceless family heirlooms…

Oh, no point in scolding the shameless, correcting the oblivious.
Like serenading the comatose, waterproofing the Hindenburg.

Did you hear they’re gentrifying the labyrinth? Even the Minotaur
can’t afford it anymore. At least they’ve diversified the donnybrook.

You can see one of my many-times-great grandmas photo-bombing
The Garden of Earthly Delights…on the far right, near the rabbit.
Though I guess you’d call it “painting-bombing.” Hell is on the
right side of the picture. The viewer’s right. The damned’s left.

Please, don’t get me started on all those dingbats spooning
the Bill of Rights. Booby-trapping the English lexicon, they are!
And traumatizing the astronauts, keeping us too scared to stray
too far from Earth. Oh, and could you please forward me those
CliffsNotes for Steal This Book?

I can’t believe they’re re-booting The Clash—fucking auto-tuning
the revolution! I mean, whatever “the revolution” means anymore.
The revolution will not be _____________. The revolution will not be.

I heard they had to start pixelating the food-porn in Santa Claus’s
Instagram. Kids were begging their parents to buy them expensive
& sexy food all year round. Wouldn’t it be cool if Elvis’d been alive
for Instagram? But when did he die again? Like 2009, right?

Of course they’re gonna weaponize the pacifists. Who else’s gonna?
Either way, once they monetize that eschaton, boy: watch out!

You mean the new show about the Marquis de Sade? Yeah I didn’t
think I’d get sucked in, but now I can’t stop hate-watching.

My hot-take is, there are some gargantuan plot holes in the story
of human evolution. Also, 78% of traffic jams are orchestrated
by Mongolian hackers. I think I should patent a guillotine
that uses lasers, but I have a hunch someone must’ve already.

I tell you, Philistines are a gaping wound, and we gotta
cauterize at all costs. Quarantines don’t need spoiler warnings,
they need all the info they can get. That’s why I’m constantly
subtweeting the Illuminati in all these self-published magazines.

There, you see? I’m utterly lost without my boilerplates! Those
clichés were irreplaceable! Here’s hoping these spare pieces
of small-talk my chauffeur found in the trunk of my limo
will suffice until the election.

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czmakeoverCLAUDIA ZANDER is a lighthouse keeper living in Long Island Sound, and the poetry editor of FLAPPERHOUSE. Tweets @LaudedCzarina.

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