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To The Princess
Brian Gresham

Listen, my darling, and you shall hear
What I see in you when I’ve not had a beer.
When I said to you
How your eyes are imbued
With a scintillating shine
Surpassing all the stars combined,
Now I see that was a lie.
Daylight provides a better view.
When I saw that your lips were a richer red
Than I’d ever seen on a rose
I’d not a thought on my mind
But the warmth of your bed.
In my drunken prose,
I forgot to disclose
That I am colorblind.
Your steps are heavier than an angel’s tread
When you glide, a swan has more grace.
There is nothing divine in the way you pace
The floor in my flannel threads.
Your face might launch one ship from its moors
But a thousand, I would doubt.
Perhaps a few more if you would wash out
The foundation that’s clogging your pores.
Now, you blanch at this dose of reality
And have every reason for slapping me,
But show me the cost in what I say.
What beauty is lost or left unconveyed?
Breasts the peaks of mountains high
Would make poor rests for the head to lie.
And eyes as bright as the morning sun
Could not long be gazed upon.
A glass slipper,
Though it glittered,
Would have broken on the ballroom floor.
Should have met a fella’
Who saw the talent in her chores.
And one look at the annals of history
Should sway you from all royal fantasy.
Princes poisoned by arsenic, mercury, lead
Or debilitated slowly by generations inbred,
Are all you might find for your royal bed.
And if a courtly retinue attending to your toilet,
And beggars, thieves, and street latrines are not enough to spoil it,
Just wait for a change of political scene
There’s always the chance of the guillotine.
Yes, I know I’m an ass.
There’s no need to pass
Such a judgement upon me.
Let’s just raise a glass
And agree to bypass
This sad trap of hyperbole.

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