"The Apotheosis of Washington," by Constantino BrumidiInaugural Poem for Donald J. Trump The Society January 15, 2017 Culture, News of Note, Poetry 61 Comments Pibroch of the Domhnall http://classicalpoets.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Inaugural_Poem_Copyright_2017_By_Joseph_Charles_MacKenzie_V1-1.mp3 By Joseph Charles MacKenzie Author’s Notes: § The refrains at the end of each stanza are to be recited by the Inaugural crowd. § A Pibroch is a rallying bagpipe tune and is pronounced like “PEA-brohgh.” § Domhnall, the Scottish form of the name Donald, is pronounced like “TONE-all” § Torquil was the royal progenitor of the MacLeods of Lewis, the outer hebridean island and birthplace of President Trump’s immigrant mother, Mary Anne MacLeod. Come out for the Domhnall, ye brave men and proud, The scion of Torquil and best of MacLeod! With purpose and strength he came down from his tower To snatch from a tyrant his ill-gotten power. Now the cry has gone up with a cheer from the crowd: “Come out for the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod!” When freedom is threatened by slavery’s chains And voices are silenced as misery reigns, We’ll come out for a leader whose courage is true Whose virtues are solid and long overdue. For, he’ll never forget us, we men of the crowd Who elected the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! When crippling corruption polluted our nation And plunged our economy into stagnation, As self-righteous rogues took the opulent office And plump politicians reneged on their promise, The forgotten continued to form a great crowd That defended the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! The Domhnall’s a giver whilst others just take, Ne’er gaining from that which his hands did not make. A builder of buildings, employing good men, He’s enriched many cities by factors of ten. The honest and true gladly march with the crowd Standing up for the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! True friend of the migrant from both far and near, He welcomes the worthy, but guards our frontier, Lest a murderous horde, for whom hell is the norm, Should threaten our lives and our nation deform. We immigrants hasten to swell the great crowd Coming out for the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! Academe now lies dead, the old order rots, No longer policing our words and our thoughts; Its ignorant hirelings pretending to teach Are backward in vision, sophomoric in speech. Now we learnèd of mind add ourselves to the crowd That cheers on the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! The black man, forgotten, in poverty dying, The poor man, the sick man, with young children crying, The soldier abroad and the mother who waits, The young without work or behind prison gates, The veterans, wounded, all welcome the crowd That fights for the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! Whilst hapless old harridans flapping their traps Teach women to look and behave like us chaps, The Domhnall defends the defenseless forlorn; For, a woman’s first right is the right to be born. Now the bonnie young lassies that fly to the crowd Have a champion in Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! But for all his great wisdom, the braw gallant man Is matched by his children, the handsome Trump clan, And the flower of Europe, Melania the fair, Adds a luster and grace with her long flowing hair. May they flourish and prosper to form a great crowd Around the good Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! Is there man left in Scotland, without base alloy, Who remembers the Wallace, the Bruce, or Rob Roy? Or have five hundred years of a blasphemous lie Robbed your manhood of might that you lay down and die? Get up and walk free, all ye brave men and proud! Long life to the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! © Joseph Charles MacKenzie, all rights reserved Joseph Charles MacKenzie is the first and last American to win First Place in the Long Poem Section of the Scottish International Poetry Competition, Henry M. Austin Poetry Prize. (The views expressed in individual poems on this website do not reflect those of the Society. The Society does not endorse political candidates.) ************************************************************************ Gentle Readers, I am very pleased to announce that a magnificent Scottish voice has agreed to make a recording of what has become known throughout the world as “Mr. Trump’s Inaugural Poem”—quite possibly the most widely read poem in British-American circles at this moment. I hereby release it to the general public for its enjoyment and edification. If I must accept the title of “Inaugural Poet” from the hands of History herself, no more intending to wear this mantle than Mr. Trump initially intended to bear upon his shoulders that of President of our nation, know that I accept it in deepest humility and gratitude to all those who have supported my endeavor, in particular Mr. Evan Mantyk, the brilliant, young editor of the Society of Classical poets. Contrary to rumors—the fruit, no doubt, of great excitement at the appearance of so novel a work—my poem, alas, is not to be read at the official ceremonies of Inauguration. For, Providence has arranged that the “Inaugural Poem,” rather than descending from the pretentious podium of an academic elite, should arise instead from the hearts of those Forgotten Men and Women standing upon the solid earth of their convictions. For, I am one of the Forgotten Men, a worker who knows too well life’s common struggle. In offering the gift of the “Inaugural Poem” to that courageous gentleman who clearly deserves the homage of the muse, and as my financial circumstances prevent me from attending the Inauguration of the very subject of my poem, may I please invite those assisting at this happy event to share in my absence the “Pibroch to the Domhnall” with the Inaugural Crowd whose diverse members are also celebrated in my rhymes. Thank you, Scotland, birthplace of song, for the lilt of my verses, and for the large and generous character of the world’s new leader. Congratulations, Mr. President! Joseph Charles MacKenzie https://mackenziepoet.com/donations/ Related Post ‘Where is Alice’ by Paris Michael Where was it that Alice went, One bright and shining day, A rabbit's lair, beneath the blare, A restless child at play, And where was it that Al... Tell the world:FacebookTwitterTumblrPinterestRedditLinkedInEmail 61 Responses Joe Tessitore January 15, 2017 Bravo!!! Joe T Reply Joseph Charles MacKenzie January 15, 2017 Many thanks, kind Sir. Reply J.L.S January 18, 2017 This poem wasn’t perfect but I quite liked the meter and I’m glad someone at least gave a shot at giving Trump a poem. Gene in L.A. January 18, 2017 J.L.S. Except for the repeated “refrain,” it’s the precise meter and rhyming scheme of “A Visit From St. Nicholas.” Very lofty indeed! Waverock January 18, 2017 Great job! I feel your poetry is very evocative and conveys a feeling, or sensibility, really well. Regretfully I see many negative comments. If people are moved by a poem and engage with it and get a true feeling of what the poem expresses, the poet has done their job. It is not neccessary that the reader shares the same political persuasion. Its also not neccessary for art to be a echo chamber for our pre existing views ; ) Reply Helen Roos January 18, 2017 Great, for Donald. Reply Michelle T Simon January 15, 2017 Well done! I smiled throughout because I took it as a tongue-in-cheek kinda thing. My apologies if you were actually being serious. Reply Joseph Charles MacKenzie January 15, 2017 Oh yes, your response is quite natural. Already we have that Scottish rhythm and, indeed, the whole decor of Sir Walter Scott’s world. I greatly appreciate that you were able to find a certain levity in my poem, as my themes are the very opposite of light. Indeed, I aimed for a poem that would be “souriant” as opposed to grave, even if my content reflects the troubles into which our nation has descended of late. The structure is actually quite complex, so I wanted the reader not to get lost in the depths, but rather enjoy the apparent seamlessness of the whole. So no apologies necessary as your smile is just exactly what I had hoped to achieve. We Americans need a bit of relief from our woes and divisions, so a bit of levity is something we can all of us appreciate at this time. Past inaugural poems have been pretentiously serious and stiff, even bureaucratic and, because modernist, utterly boring. Reply Rebecca January 17, 2017 I seldom find a poem that I do not like and the cadence of yours is good, however I’m deeply troubled by the content. Is it satire? Is it going to be read at the inauguration? Would you mind clarifying? william van Deusen January 17, 2017 I absolutely loved it and only wish that I had the talent and skill to have written it! I and many true American people who want truly to see him bring our country back to greatness hope this is the first of many to come celebrating his successful leadership! Lorna Davis January 18, 2017 To Mitchel Ahern: just for the record, the sentiments expressed in this poem are not shared by all of the poets on this site. Please don’t lump us together. Like any loose-knit group of human beings, we have diverse beliefs and opinions. This “hapless old harrigan” believes without apology that women should look and behave in whatever fashion they choose, just like the other half of humanity. And just for the record, I can’t imagine lauding a man whose fortune was built on bilking workers, sub-contractors and debtors out of money owed to them. Just because a thing is legal does not make it ethical, honorable or moral. For a wealthy man to file bankruptcy multiple times while still continuing to be wealthy is a shameful thing. I can’t see “the Domnhall” as anything other than utterly unworthy of the office he’s about to be sworn into. For the sake of my country (and the planet), I sincerely hope my perception of the danger he represents is wrong. NancyN January 18, 2017 Pay no attention to the trolls. You can tell how good it is by how much they hate it. I loved your poem and passed it on. Women need to be freed from the “hapless old harridans flapping their traps,” especially because “a woman’s first right is the right to be born.” Alan W. Jankowski January 16, 2017 What Michelle said actually…I agree it was well done, but I too found a certain levity in the verse…then again, I tend to find a certain levity in most everything… Reply Amy Foreman January 15, 2017 Superb Pibroch, Joseph! Love the Scottish sound of the triple meter! A delightfully anti-PC rallying cry! Reply Joseph Charles MacKenzie January 15, 2017 SCP is truly a movement which allows us to explore the freedom, and not just the restraints, of traditional poetry. I am grateful to be part of a true “milieu” which inspires me to explore new areas of creativity. Reply Dona Fox January 15, 2017 Delightful choice of words, meter, everything. I was with wee modest Crimson tipped flowers in my mouth (I know I’ve not gone for the accent there, forgive me, I’m on the treadmill). I’ll be looking for more of your poetry, I’m sure you have a link, a book, more on here …. Reply Joseph Charles MacKenzie January 15, 2017 Ha, ha, ha! I love that my poem can be enjoyed on a treadmill (also a sober reminder that I need to acquire this virtue of exercise)! As for your question about my other verses, I have just posted http://www.mackenziepoet.com where you may actually hear some. Veteran British stage actor Ian Russell has just completed his recording of my sonnets and these are now being remastered (so not yet available but soon). As you will find, I am primarily a traditional lyric poet: https://mackenziepoet.com/ Reply Dona Fox January 15, 2017 I should have been warned not to listen to your sonnets on the treadmill as they brought me to my knees. Thank you, Sir. Reply Kenneth Kyntale January 15, 2017 Only a man with great literary breadth and a knowledge of literary history could have pulled this off. This is THE presidential inaugural poem if ever there was one! Reply Lynne January 17, 2017 Amen, Gene in LA. Rather common for dictators and despots to hire court troubadours to sing their praises. Just one more part of the propaganda machine. Alas, as always, Trump demonstrates his lack of character and class by having a poem about him rather than the greatness of this nation or people. Reply Bobby Frost January 17, 2017 The land was Trumps before we were the land’s. She was Trump’s land more than a hundred years Before we were Trump’s people. She was Trump’s In Massachusetts, in Virginia, But we were Trumps, still colonials, Possessing what we still were unpossessed by, Possessed by what we now no more possessed. Something we were withholding made us weak Until we found out that it was ourselves We were withholding from our land of living, And forthwith found salvation in surrender. Such as we were we gave ourselves outright (The deed of gift was many deeds of war) To the land vaguely realizing westward, But still unstoried, artless, unenhanced, Such as she was, such as she would become. Reply Blake Elliott January 16, 2017 “Whilst hapless old harridans flapping their traps Teach women to look and behave like us chaps… ” I have few words, too busy laughing. And as a descendant of Elliot Scottish warriors, I appreciated the Scottishness. Reply Clide Abersuwe January 16, 2017 A lively, clever, and excellent handling of anapestic tetrameter. Kenneth is right; this is the unprecedented, presidential inaugural poem. Reply Paul Thomas Glass January 17, 2017 LET US BE AMERICA (You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?) – Matthew 5:13 Let US be America Let us herald a New World’s way Be harbinger to all who cast aspiring eyes Toward these shores and their wondrous tidings A harbor indeed for those tempest-tost So weary and wretched Let us be Haven and hearth which by Heaven’s decree Is terminus here in America And let US be met by those blessings of Fortune That we who’ve sown seeds in these rich, fertile soils Are assured of then reaping as an ample reward Bestowed upon All righteous husbandry Indeed trusting of evermore bountiful harvests For OUR children to glean Let us be Pledged they will garner the magnificent legacy Once testament here in America Then let US now build that shining-city long sought It/Home to a most remarkable people They hold Justice as a father his dearest child Liberty as an infant Its mother’s milk Who are fearless, forthright and utterly faithful To their tending posterity May WE Be Thus INDEED A marvelous beacon which ALL Ages may heed As/Hence tantamount here in America So let us waste not, want not Nor wander afar from Our great nation’s most glorious Dream – THIS (pray God) Let US be America Reply Christine Tessitore January 17, 2017 THIS SHOULD BE READ AT THE INAUGURATION ON FRIDAY!! MAYA ANGELOU COULD TAKE A LESSON OR TWO FROM YOU. Reply PTG (Paul Thomas Glass) January 17, 2017 Please see below PTG (Paul Thomas Glass). And share my poem with anyone and everyone you will. Reply PTG (Paul Thomas Glass) January 17, 2017 RIGHT HERE — PTG (Paul Thomas Glass) “Let Us Be America” is located directly above Christine Tessitore’s entry. And please: SHARE MY POEM!!! Reply PTG January 17, 2017 It was supposed to be. And it is I who have learned MORE than one lesson from Maya Angelou (may she be in God’s arms). Please, Ms. Tessitore, I beg you: share my poem with anyone and everyone you will. Reply David Dietle January 17, 2017 Obama received the popular and electoral vote, but sure “Ill gotten” Reply Copyleft January 18, 2017 I was wondering about that one too… Is it standard to just call any elected official you dislike a “tyrant with ill-gotten power”? Reply Gene in L.A. January 18, 2017 Whether it is or not is less pertinent than that it perfectly describes Trump. Tomás Ó Cárthaigh January 22, 2017 In Bardic poetry it is, the Kings Bard would laud whether merited or not the Kings achievements or powers, and insult beyond reason his opponents and detractors… I didnt see Obama as a tyrant myself, though many from Iraq to Libya would beg to differ not to mention Palestine, but it wouldnt be for the reasons the poet here calls him so. Eric Yauerbach January 18, 2017 how so “ill gotten”? Reply Caroline January 17, 2017 Well, if academe wasn’t dead before this poem was written, it certainly is now. Yiiiiiiiikes. Reply Copyleft January 18, 2017 That’s another puzzler. Why on earth would “academe lies dead” be something to cheer for? Reply Jeremy January 17, 2017 Right? I wish I could memorize this. Reply Alexander Hamilton January 17, 2017 Truth! Alexander would be so proud of you. Reply DoktorZoom January 17, 2017 Truly, you are a modern day Emmeline Grangerford. Reply Huckleberry January 18, 2017 If Emmeline Grangerford could make poetry like that, there ain’t no telling what she could a done by-and-by. Reply Michael January 17, 2017 Ha! Ha! Well, you’ve penned a work that is perfect for the occasion*. *not a compliment Reply Sandra January 17, 2017 Was this piece actually commissioned, or did you use write it speculatively? Reply Shay January 17, 2017 Mr Moore, I lift my leafy arms to you. Somewhere Joyce Kilmer is laughing. Reply C Humphrey January 17, 2017 A pibroch is also a funeral song played on the pipes. Good use of double-entendre there. Reply Amy Foreman January 17, 2017 I disagree with you, Jeremy, not just in your view of this poem, but probably also in your definition of beauty and grace. Notice, however, that my disagreement does not lead to my vilifying you or trotting out the “f-bomb.” As you say, “[w]e’re still allowed to have opinions.” But it would be nice if the Wonkette crowd could show a bit more class as they share those opinions with us. Reply Wiliam Shakespeare January 17, 2017 Honestly, this barely even scans. Reply John Milton January 18, 2017 It actually scans perfectly, Bill. Reply Lebudias Crewe January 17, 2017 “Let no man pull you so low as to hate him.” Martin Luther King, Junior. Reply Friedrich Nietzsche January 17, 2017 The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his enemies, but also to hate his friends. Reply Marlene January 17, 2017 Brilliant response–thank you! Reply Brigit January 18, 2017 Bravissima! Reply Douglas Forasté January 18, 2017 What’s the difference between Mick Jagger and a Scottish farmer. Mick says, “Hey, you, get offa my cloud.” The Scottish farmer says, “Hey, MacLeod, get offa my ewe.” the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! Reply Edna St. Vincent Millay January 18, 2017 It seems as if MacKenzie has hit a raw nerve. There is no doubt that Wallace Stevens was less metrical than MacKenzie. Reply Eric Yauerbach January 18, 2017 I must say your poem here reminds me very much of the work of Julia A. Moore, whose poem on Andrew Jackson I think it would be most apposite to quote here in full: On the life of Andrew Jackson, Now dear people I will write, And in sketches, I will tell you His career with great delight. His career on earth is ended; But his name is ever bright, And his memory is cherished As a great glorious knight. The early life of Andrew Jackson, Its marked in high renown, As a lover of his country He proved steadfastly profound, Through kind teaching of his mother, That patriot lady brave; His mind strengthened by her wisdom, Ere she sank into her grave. Ah, in manhood, Andrew Jackson, Was a daring fearless man; With a strong iron will commanding, He was loved throughout our land. He was kind and generous hearted In his military acts, Yet was stubborn, while commanding, And no courage did he lack. At middle age, Andrew Jackson Was a noble warlike man, And was capable of handling The army at his command. You can see it by the battles Of his Indian campaign, Or the battle of New Orleans, Where so many men were slain. The dauntless energy of Jackson, Oh, should never be forgot, Or the battle of New Orleans, Where he diligently fought. Where he fought to save his country, From the British fleets of fame; Through coolness and courage The victory he did gain. As commander, Andrew Jackson Was a soldier of great skill, And he nobly done his duty To his country, with good will. Yet in life his acts were censured, Ah, by men both great and small. One the acts that made him trouble Was the arresting of Judge Hall. Oh, that act cost Andrew Jackson Many heart pang in after life, For he thought it was his duty In that hard cruel strife That his soldiers should obey him And fulfill every command, As he knew no other method, He could save his native land. The people loved Andrew Jackson, “Old Hickory” was their friend. As a President o’er our country He proved faithful to the end. His career on earth was ended Eighteen Forty Five; is seen As a star his name is shining The “hero” of “New Orleans.” Reply Sabine January 19, 2017 Thank you so much, good Sire, for bringing us all, this night of doom and shadows and grim forebodings, a good laugh and smile to see us through til morning. Yours is surely the best attitude and antidote, the eve of the day when the evil Jester takes the throne, to not forget that he is a Jester still, that we should laugh, not cry, at his antics, and that ours is the powers in his tiny hands, but a loan, but a loan. Thank you, really!! <3 Reply Carolyn Clark January 19, 2017 I do appreciate the spirit of generosity shown towards this poem which has traditional meter and commendable historical imagination but reflects neither an understanding of America’s long seeded woes nor empathy for the depth of very real fears present on this the eve of presidential transition. Reply Lothar Geldbeutel January 21, 2017 This is the best poem I’ve read since “The Tay Bridge Disaster”! Reply Tomás Ó Cárthaigh January 21, 2017 It is quite the bardic tradition all right though it is totally against my politics… in the old style it features the strong points as the king would like them seen, and insults his adversaries… The rollicking rhyme is something else, very enjoyable, but alas I am working on a retort to it!!! As you will have seen in my writings the Don is not my favourite character at all, as I see at best a return to the pre Kennedy WASP America which will be brilliant… for some, but not us… Again as a poem, and as a poet who put his heart into it, kudos, its just not my politics that’s all! Reply The Society January 30, 2017 Another consideration for the inaugural poem… Flags By Quinn Kobrin Why do we fly the flags half-mast? I think it means something now it didn’t in the past. What once was a symbol of grief and respect, Now represents hatred, blindness, neglect For others, and the lives that are taken. I think somewhere along the line, someone was mistaken. Our country is caught in the midst of a storm. Since when did grief become the new norm? Flying a lowered flag was a sign of hurt pride, As mentioned above, respect for those who died, And their loved ones who kneeled at their side and cried For the future guaranteed which now is denied. But for nearly a month now when I go outside, I’ve seen this symbol of fallen pride. Each day is filled with grief and despair. You can feel the hatred rise in the air. The streets are full of strengthening tension. Why can’t everyone just pay attention? With every day lost, we increase the cost, The cost of the peace we so desperately want. We spend so much time grieving, hating and blaming When we should be uniting, together reclaiming This country we fought so fervently for. The time to sit back and take it’s no more! Now I’m not saying we shouldn’t mourn a lost brother, But mourning is one thing, giving up is another. And flying our flags half mast each day, Feels like we’re mourning a death on it’s way. The death of us, this country, our nation. It’s like we grieve in anticipation. But now is the day to bring that mourning to an end. We must all come together, as a people, as friends, And raise this nation to what it was meant to be: The home of the brave and the land of the free. Reply Tomás Ó Cárthaigh February 13, 2017 As promised… the retort verse of mine to this has been written and can be read here: http://www.writingsinrhyme.com/index.php/may-the-lord-in-his-mercy-save-us-from-the-worst-of-mac-leod/ Reply Debbie Johnson February 14, 2017 A fantastically powerful poem. Political views aside, great poem. Reply Kirk February 18, 2017 Bravo Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email.