Vol. 37 No. 17 · 10 September 2015

Michael C. Rockefeller Wing, Metropolitan Museum of Art

Frederick Seidel

244 words

A man with the bulging belly of the rich man of his tribe,
Older than middle-aged, and of course with many wives,
Possibly the tribal chief but possibly a tribal scribe
Who eats and drinks a lot and abundantly thrives,
Walks through Central Park to get to the Met,
And, after, over to Madison, destination Sant’ Ambroeus,
A restaurant whose name rhymes with enjoy us,
To meet and eat pretty girls before the sun sets, which soon will set.

He walks through Central Park and gets to Fifth,
And then to Madison, destination Sant’ Ambroeus,
The patron saint of Milan who rhymes with joyous,
Name of a stylish restaurant with a front part about the width
A bulging belly needs to sip an espresso at the bar,
While your typical sleek Milan Italian is the width of a cigar.
Death stands there with its thing sticking out,
Working the espresso machine until it spurts and gives a shout.

How many times have I told you how savage Central Park is.
You have to come while you’re alive and visit us.
We’ll hold each other, exclaiming, Are we really here! Is it us!
And how beautiful, deep inside the park, when the lights go on, the dark is.
Live captives cooking in the cannibals’ boiling pot soar
In the summer breeze musically hushing the trees.
Jakarta, Cairo, Tokyo, Rio, Beijing, London, Accra, Mecca wait on their knees
To be beheaded in their gore.

Send Letters To:

The Editor
London Review of Books,
28 Little Russell Street
London, WC1A 2HN


Please include name, address, and a telephone number.

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences