Paul Violi



                              Huggermugger


Ctesias:

The last enemies against whom Cyrus fought
were Scythians from Margiana, hoity-toity,
who were led by King Amoreaus, hot-shot.
These people, mounted on elephants, holy-moly,
ambushed the Persians, helter-skelter,
and put them to rout, higgledy-piggledy.
Cyrus himself fell from his horse, humpty-dumpty,
and a lance pierced his thigh, low-blow booboo.
Three days later, he died from the wound, loco.


Herodotus:

After decades of warfare, Cyrus, wheeler-dealer,
perished in combat against the armies, super-duper,
of Queen Thomyris, hoochie-coochie,
who had long desired to avenge, rough stuff,
the death of her son, namby-pamby.
She ordered the body of Cyrus dragged, ragtag,
from beneath the slain and his head, harum-scarum,
thrown in a vat of blood, jeepers creepers.
She then commanded the lifeless conqueror: "Drink
this blood, after which you ever thirsted, but
by which your thirst was never allayed, jelly belly!"


Xenophon:

Cyrus died tranquilly in his bed, fancy schmancy.
He had been forewarned in a dream, hocus pocus,
by a man with such a majestic bearing that he
appeared much more than mortal, razzle-dazzle.
"Prepare yourself," he told Cyrus, "for you will
soon be in the company of the gods, hobnob."
Cyrus awoke and offered sacrifices, solo,
on a nearby mountaintop, sky-high,
not to implore the gods, hanky-panky,
to prolong his life, but to thank them, lovey dovey,
for their protection. Three days later, payday,
he gently breathed his last. Okey-dokey.


Lucian:

Cyrus died of grief. Itsy-bitsy.
He was over one hundred years old, fuddy-duddy,
and he was inconsolable because his son, crumbum,
had killed most of his friends, brain drain.
But his son paid him all honors after his death,
building a tomb for him a Passagarda, grandstand,
a city Cyrus had built on the very spot, hot-spot,
where he had vanquished Astyages, who was none other
than his own grandfather. Wowie-zowie. Even-steven.



Paul Violi, Selected Poems 1970-2007, Rebel Arts, 2014.