Saturday, April 13, 2013

Let Them Point

Dorothy Parker turned heads, and eyes were rolled at her, and tongues were clucked at the mention of her name. When Captain Jack Sparrow was told, "You are without doubt the worst pirate I've ever heard of," he retorted, "But you have heard of me." Dorothy Parker lived this retort out daily, for most of her life. Many in America were sure that she was the worst woman they'd ever heard of, but all must admit that they had heard of her.

And yet, while she was censured in public, she was paid grandly to perform on every stage in the country. Everyone wanted to see her and hear her mock her own indiscretions. They'd pay to come to her speeches, then go home and cluck their tongues that such a creature was allowed in decent society. But in the end her wit and candor were worth more to the world than were a thousand decent people's judgments.

Then let them point my every tear,
And let them mock and moan;
Another week, another year,
And I'll be with my own

Who slumber now by night and day
In fields of level brown;
Whose hearts within their breasts were clay
Before they laid them down.


Regina said...

An extraordinary poet and person! Thanks for sharing this :-)

Doug P. Baker said...

Thank you for commenting, because it reminded me that I haven't been to Obiterspeak in ages. You have really done some remarkable work, Regina!

"There, you hang from limbs of victory
Being made an example and spectacle
And symbol of torment and misery
Tied with a rope to serve as manacle
That ensured your hide was torn in a way
That will mean conquest for the shining god
Deity of enlightenment and reason
The lofty gaze of day
While you lie on stony ground drenched with blood
Object of divine intent and treason!"

(From Ode To The Prisoner Of History, by Regina)