September 10th, 2010



You grin too much; we know your teeth shine white.
Some thug's life's being begged for by his brief
some mother's burying her son - such grief! -
you're there and so's the smile. It's not polite

Egnatius; people think you've some disease -
paralysis or madness. It's poor style
and out of fashion. This inane fixed smile
makes me quite ill. I wish you'd shut it, please.

Sabines, Etruscans, Umbrians and such
use running water when they clean their teeth.
Same with us in Verona. It's beneath
our dignity to smile so very much.

Worse, you're from Spain, and the real trouble is
we know you wash your gums and teeth with piss.


My mind's disturbed, my love, and you're to blame;
I cannot think straight and am caught in shame;
when you are good to me, I think you're cursed
And I still love you when you do your worst.


You'll dine well, Fabullus, round at my place
if it's convenient, in a few days.
Just bring some takeaway, perhaps Chinese
with rice and noodles. Chopsticks, if you please.

Also a pretty girl; it would be good
of you to bring some wine or beer.We could
play Cluedo, or Monopoly, or chess,
if you could bring them round. There's wilderness

and winds and cobwebs in my wallet now
and little else. But I can tell you how
I will reward you, if you're kind. I've got
some perfume my girl brought me. Just a spot

will drive you wild. There's musk in it, and rose.
One whiff will make you pray to be all nose.