Warnings and Admonitions

Warnings and Admonitions

Patricia Budd

Remember the stories of the old, hellish Devil?
Well, he has foresworn those trademark
signs, the ancient portents. He does not revel
in floods of steamy excrement, the dark

that blots the sun at noon and renders wise men
senseless and afeared, the iridescent eyes
and glossy plumage of a parliament of raven
flocking London’s Tower with their croaking cries.

Times have changed; no longer a rascally fiend,
he has suited up in more fashionable dress
the better to woo the minds of those convened
to flout oblige and flaunt the coinage of noblesse.

He blends with crowds teeming ‘round me,
smiles and bows at those who practice skullduggery,
confident he’s second to none in villainy;
a master of temptation and Beezlbubbery.

Patricia Budd

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