.

The Proud

“You are proud because you live in those high, inaccessible cliffs.
‘Who can ever reach us way up here!’ you boast. Don’t fool
yourselves! Though you soar as high as eagles, and build your
nest among the stars, I will bring you plummeting down,” says
the Lord. —Obadiah 1:3-4

We’re blessed that the best from among all our betters,
the richest, the wisest, the trend and jet setters,
the cream at the top of all human creation,
have selflessly chosen to lead our great nation.

They limit our rights, but it’s for a good reason,
they’re only concerned that we might commit treason.
So, freedoms like speech and expressing religion
are totally fine if reined in just a smidgeon.

They tell us our voices are heard through elections.
They tally the votes and if there are objections,
they let us speak freely, as long as we’re quiet,
since any dissent is considered a riot.

They know more than we do and speak with conviction,
with multi-syllabic, complex-sounding diction,
and though what they say sounds like lies and deception,
this must be because of our lack of perception.

We eagerly let them withhold our possessions
to fund what at first seem like evil obsessions,
like jailing opponents and spying on churches,
with which we’d agree if we lived on their perches.

If we’d just climb high where the view is breathtaking,
we’d see all the progress they say that we’re making,
and see how their kindness makes our lives fulfilling,
but their kind of kindness is so kind it’s killing.

We’re blessed our elitists have chosen to rule us,
and since we know selfless elitists won’t fool us,
we know that the rain from on high that we’re seeing
could never be caused by them casually peeing.

.

.

Warren Bonham is a private equity investor who lives in Southlake, Texas.


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27 Responses

  1. Roy Eugene Peterson

    What a great political statement that is perceptive and clever. I love matching the eye-opening Bible verse to the extremely well-chosen words! This says so much in a creative and intensely vivid way.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      Thanks for the supportive comments. Obadiah doesn’t get much exposure and it fits the current mood very well.

      Reply
  2. Phil S. Rogers

    Warren; 100% right on target. Love the satire, and rhyming. The last stanza sums everything up nicely.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      Living in Texas, I had always assumed that the expression about peeing on someone’s leg and telling them it’s raining was some kind of old Cowboy saying. I think it may actually have originated in Australia instead. Regardless, it seems to fit very well with how we get treated by our betters.

      Reply
  3. Joseph S. Salemi

    If you just look at the faces of the elitist aristocracy that rules us, you can see the smug, self-satisfied, de-haut-en-bas contempt that they hold for all the rest of us peasants.

    This poem clinches it.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      They are definitely a nauseating bunch. I’m very glad there are others who can see that.

      Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      Every once in a while I think they don’t really understand what they’re doing to us, but then I come to my senses.

      Reply
  4. Julian D. Woodruff

    A noble hymn to the (long-suffering) public servant. Sung to “The Ash Grove,” maybe?

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      I never thought of a musical angle but the idea of a protest hymn is very appealing.

      Reply
  5. jd

    Sarcasm as artful fodder. I must confess I had trouble understanding the final line but thanks to Cheryl, I think I do now.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      I was wondering whether that reference was a little too “out there”. I don’t know what it says about Cheryl that it connected with her.

      Reply
      • Joseph S. Salemi

        It says that Cheryl knows American slang. The words “to piss on someone” mean to show open contempt and disdain for persons, either by verbally bashing them or by treating them without respect. Cheryl picked this up immediately.

  6. David Whippman

    Warren, thanks for this ingenious and all too relevant poem. It’s the same in the UK; our freedom of speech is vanishing under the guise of “anti hate laws” and so forth. Fortunately there are people (like the author JK Rowling and the comedian Ricky Gervais) fighting back.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      I have a healthy dose of Scottish blood so I’ve been following the situation over there in shock. William of Wallace would be heartbroken.

      Reply
    • Joseph S. Salemi

      I’ll never forget Mel Gibson’s amazing film “Braveheart,” about William Wallace’s fight for Scotland’s freedom. The only answer to left-liberal tyranny is to FIGHT BACK. No discussion, no debating, no friendly chit-chat.

      Reply
  7. Brian A. Yapko

    This is great satire, Warren, with in-your-face truth told with poetic aplomb. The line “…their kind of kindness is so kind it’s killing.” is particularly powerful not only because of the alliteration and variations on the word “kind” but because it’s just so damningly true. Nobody thinks he or she is nicer than a deluded leftist on a compassion bender who thinks that any horrible illegal or immoral action is not so bad if it’s for the Cause. They can talk themselves into justifying any monstrous behavior.

    Reply
    • Joseph S. Salemi

      Brian, the same thing was true for Nazis and Communists. If it served the Fuhrer, or if it showed allegiance to the Communist “Party Line,” it was OK.

      Reply
      • Warren Bonham

        “Killing with kindness” is one of many wise phrases coined by Shakespeare. Unfortunately, his wisdom got erased when he was canceled. I like the phrase “compassion bender”. It sounds like something Shakespeare would have come up with were he writing today.

  8. Michael Vanyukov

    Verses like these help a lot to keep one’s cool when the blood may really be boiling, and to think what could be done. The totalitarians, Soviet rulers hated satire, allowing just a bit – to let the steam out – but even that was their mistake, as it did undermine the foundations of their power.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      It’s great to have someone who can bring that historical perspective. It is definitely a challenge to maintain a cool head in these crazy times.

      Reply
  9. Margaret Coats

    Warren, congratulations on your flawlessly regular meter (as in some of your other poems) applied to this work on the king of the vices. You’re able to make it (I mean the vice) sarcastically distasteful. And how sad the “kindness” lines are. Good to have the prophet thunder his reminder of retribution for a strong start.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      Thanks! And thanks also for clarifying that it is the underlying vice that is sarcastically distasteful and not the work product itself.

      Reply
  10. Susan Jarvis Bryant

    Excellent satire that makes a grave point with rhyme, rhythm, and rapture. Thank you, Warren!

    Reply
  11. Adam Wasem

    Wonderfully acid, Warren. The sprightly meter and faux-naif viewpoint makes it even better. And seeing my Midwestern farm-boy grandfather’s old saying to cinch the poem made me laugh out loud. All of our attitudes nowadays towards our “betters” need to be “Don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining,” as Grandpa used to say.

    Reply
    • Warren Bonham

      Your Midwestern grandfather and my Scottish one would have liked each other. No one seems to listen to the wisdom from their elders any more but we’d be better off getting our wisdom that way rather than from TiK Tok or from our educational system.

      Reply

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