Donald In Debate

A Swan Song of the Republic in the Year 2016

With apologies to everyone, but especially Ernest Thayer.

The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the GOP that day:
The Dems still held the White House, and the Senate was in play,
After John McCain lost his race, and Romney fizzled out,
A pall-like silence fell upon the peddlers of clout.

A faithless few got up to go to TV news. The rest
Played to the fear which gnaws eternal in the human breast;
They thought, “If a demagogue could but get a chance to run — 
We’d put up even money then, the race’d be all but won.”

But Jeb! got out there early, as did Lyin’ Teddy Cruz,
And the former was a scion, while the latter couldn’t lose;
So within that field of seventeen a fierce primary did rage.
Nate Silver saw little chance of Donald on the Cleveland stage.

But Jeb!’s campaign — lackluster. Low energy, less zeal,
And Ted, the much despisèd, could not seem to close the deal;
And when the votes were counted, pundits saw what had occurred,
Ted was out, Donald in, an ending quite absurd!

Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty hand;
It rumbled through the Reddits, it rattled in the Chan;
It resounded all through Russia and the headlines that we read,
For Donald, yes The Donald, was advancing to the lead.

There was ease in Donald’s manner as he stepped up to debate;
There was smarm in Donald’s bearing and an O creased Donald’s face.
And when, responding to the jeers, he boasted of no prep,
No pundit on the net could doubt ’twas Donald at his best.

Ten million eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with mud;
Five million tongues went wagging when he smeared the Clintons good.
Then while the debate’s ground rules were read aloud
Defiance flashed in Donald’s eye, a sneer curled Donald’s mouth.

And now the prepared zingers went hurtling to and fro
And Donald stood a smiling with a haughty puckered O.
Close by the orange strongman, charges unheeded sped — 
“I could have been mean,” said Donald. “I won!” his twitter said.

At the rallies, rife with thousands, there went up an angry roar,
Like the speeding of a storm-front coming swiftly to our shore;
“Jail her! Send her to prison!” — it’s more vicious every day;
And it’s likely they would do so, if the Donald has his way.

With a show of Christian piety great Donald’s face did gleam;
He roused the rising tumult; he bade the mob to scream;
He whistled to the racists, the debate once more begun
But Donald stalked and stumbled and then after, said, “I won!”

“Fraud!” cried out his centipedes, as his polls go down. “Fraud!”
But one scornful look at Donald, and the electorate grew awed.
They saw his brand implode and die, they heard his victims’ pain,
And they knew that Donald wouldn’t leave the shackles on again.

The sneer has grown on Donald’s face, his lips are pursed in hate,
He pounds with cruel violence his fist upon his pate;
And now Paul Ryan holds his breath, and lets the donors know,
the GOP’s not shattered by this farce of Donald’s show.

Oh, somewhere in this damned campaign, there is an upside still,
if Clinton takes the White House, the GOP might hold the Hill;
But the Democrats are laughing, and remind them with a shout:
there is no hope downticket — mighty Donald has lashed out.

Still Vote, Though.

Read by the author.