‘To Hell with the Hoi Polloi’ and Other Poetry by Craig Kurtz The Society October 28, 2015 Humor, Poetry To Hell with the Hoi Polloi A droll from the Man of Mode To hell with the hoi polloi, I say, democracy is démodé; aristocrats, by troth, know best, who needs a scurvy IQ test? A pox upon the under-class, salute the King and raise a glass; the Devil take the working poor; equality’s a royal bore. What good are beggars who can’t laugh, let’s legislate against riff-raff; the law should puff up the beau monde and drag the rest through the horse pond. Good breeding is the source of wit and should be governed by permit; the commoners have no éclat and ought to be against the law. We’ll warrant silks, perruques and dice ‘cause being rich is the best vice; the masses want life more humane, but why waste all that good champagne? Let’s sign a formal declaration that makes laboring high treason; at the risk of being rigid, wages are prohibited. Utopia’s a bellyache, let ‘em eat cake, for Heaven’s sake; noblesse oblige takes us so far and then it’s time for caviar. We’ll have no revolution, thanks, ‘cause freedom’s just for Mountebanks; the House of Bourbon had it right, the rabble should be more polite. To hell with the hoi polloi, I say, gentility has more cachet; all power to the monarchy, long live entitled foppery! Dapperwit’s Distinctions A droll from Love in a Wood The degrees of wits, as I see it are four, which I shall now remit. The Foppish Wit plies trade uptown with trillibubs of sparked renown; his verses don’t exceed sonnets and always nims their better bits; endeavoring to make dames swoon, if failed, revenges with lampoon; his meetest trait is his perruque and, gauging yours, a pert rebuke. The Café Wit’s a vain coxcomb who’s always seen with some vast tome; he’ll haul to parties book reviews, discoursing Latin ’til you snooze; he rails upon best-seller lists and thinks footnotes will interest trysts; his utterings are recondite, his learnedness is done in spite. The Romantic Wit’s a misanthrope who thinks it’s hip to pine and mope; his hair is tousled with panache and when he sees you, asks for cash; he censures mankind with rhymed taunts, esteeming just the Renaissance; certes, his staunchest raillery impugns those more well-off than he. And, last, the Critic Wit — the worst of all those wits condignly curst; he holds the court of surquedry, condemning those more deft than he; he’ll have all aphorisms slapped, all bon mots lashed, all sallies strapped; and, since he governs the wits’ gate, the wits cosset this addlepate. ’Tis certain, wits come in classes but, rest assured, they’re all asses. Craig Kurtz has vexed aesthetic circles since the 1981 release of The Philosophic Collage. Recent work appears in Aerie Literary Journal, Drunk Monkeys, Floor Plan Journal, Penumbra, The Road Not Taken: A Journal of Formal Poetry, The Transnational and Xanadu; many others would just as soon string him up. He resides at Twin Oaks Intentional Community. Featured Image: “Marie_Antoinette” by Vigée-Lebrun Views expressed by individual poets and writers on this website and by commenters do not represent the views of the entire Society. The comments section on regular posts is meant to be a place for civil and fruitful discussion. Pseudonyms are discouraged. The individual poet or writer featured in a post has the ability to remove any or all comments by emailing submissions@ classicalpoets.org with the details and under the subject title “Remove Comment.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related 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. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.