CXVII

by Mary Dodd

Rambling fool.
He is nothing but that, boy;
A genius idiot with an expensive quill
And too much time and too little ink
On his hands.
See the way he idles on those cushions,
With his perfectly manicured hands
In angles coiffed meticulously
In front of a looking-glass,
Whilst his stomach practises
Physical rhetoric in an attempt to
Get him to part with that goblet?
Poor Fabullus; he shouldn’t have accepted
That pathetic excuse for an invitation:
Cobwebs my arse!
Now Fabullus has to listen to this man
With an ego even bigger than his liver –
If such a thing be possible –
Give him the oration on
The Exact Measurements and Location
Of the breasts belonging to she
Whom he calls Lesbia
And they Clodia;
Imbecile!
He thinks the Consul a mule,
But a mule is he, who doesn’t realise
He’s sharing his bed with the woman
Who shares her bed with half of the Republic –
Yes, I know that to be a fact, of course,
Being granted such close access to him.
Quite the moron, don’t you agree, boy?
Of course you don’t;
You couldn’t speak if Augustus himself told you to,
Which is why you’re his mute waiter
And I am the scribe he dictates his harangue to
Then discards when he’s done with
His verbal diarrhoea.