The Late Harold Stassen Announces His Candidacy To Be President Of These United States

What did the poet say?

Success is counted sweetest by those who ne’er succeed.

Wrong—deeply, distressingly wrong; the nectar of success

Proves most enticing (indeed, addictive) to those whom Dame Fortune

Has coquettishly extended an index finger

And, and she swirls it in the air ever so slightly,

Let you taste (just for the briefest of moments, mind you) the tip.

A momentary sensation in the merest fragment of time, yes,

But the sweetness, the utterly transcendent joy of that single frame

In the long movie of your life, becomes not a cherished memory

But a maddening grail that engulfs every other desire

And engulfs any semblance of prudence or reason,

Until you are as a boy who, hurdling bicycles and baseball bats,

Forsakes all other toys in the absurd pursuit

Of a runaway kite that has wholly bewitched him

By the alluring pull of the string,

The mad and  joyous dance against an endless field of blue.

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6 thoughts on “The Late Harold Stassen Announces His Candidacy To Be President Of These United States

  1. Ah, Harold Stassen, referenced even in a Simpsons episode, always running for the highest office. You know your history, WK, and I love you for that. Also, the biting commentary on The Anointed Ones, who breathe the rarefied air of the Beltline environs… The “pulling strings” lit up like a Christmas tree for me. Such a good eye for satire. I love all my fellow political cynics! Thanks for posting at OLN. Amy

  2. While American politics is somewhat lost on me, I have read your poem as a reply to Dickinson’s assertion about success, how it becomes the ‘spur to prick the sides of ambition’ (if I may reference Shaklespeare) and pushes one on beyond reason, sometimes, and for its own sake. Now taking that thought and attaching it to the basic intentions of politicians gives me quite a cold chill.

  3. But a maddening grail that engulfs every other desire

    And engulfs any semblance of prudence or reason,…………what a life!!……….thanks for the wonderful post………

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