Mar

21

An exchange of verse, For better or worse, Is safer and often more fun.

Rime Of The Ancient Duck Hunter

I journeyed to the Meadowlands
from the world's most busy city,
An Econ book within my hands,
A work on volatility.
A stranger took the seat behind
and boldly whispered in my ear
"Your choice of books is unrefined,
'Tis a choice that could cost you dear.
A heavy sigh escaped his nose
A derisive laugh passed his lips.
"Tis more opaque than Siegel's prose
but less debased than Cohen's tips."

"And who are you if I may ask
to cast aspersions on this tome?
Your breath smells of a whiskey flask,
And your garb suggests no known home.
This book, you see, is all the rage
And gets four stars on Amazon,
Here's high praise from the noted Sage
And kudos from his hangers on."
"I know from whence you come, my son,
I lived there, too, not long ago.
But reading these can be overdone
And trusting them will bring you low."

"So say you, but your words imply
That I like you will miss the goal.
But I'm the caster of my die,
The captain of my ev'ry roll.
I've read the books and studied charts,
Mastered the orphic candle sticks,
Devoured Benoit's arcane arts,
And have learned to make the spondulix."
"Boy, listen to my woeful tale
Before you hold your present path,
How e'en the best are brought to quail
When forced to face the market's wrath.

"While your oversights linger on
Your triumphs will be ground down fine,
And though you doubt the denouement,
The path of hubris is malign.
I laud the dreams that brought you here
But warn that they can be interred
Through brief moments of abject fear,
Damning you to my unwashed herd.
You're on a quest but what's the goal?
Is it power, wealth, or repose?
The first two demand self-control,
The last resides in hobo's clothes."

"Do you plan on slow and steady,
or a style that's fast and gutsy?
Will the morning find you ready
Or a little vodka rusty?
Will your nights be spent in slumber
Or will you be hectored by the Yen?
Will your fate hang on a number,
Or will you hedge to play again?
Will you laugh and love, read and play?
If there's a life beyond the Street
will you enjoy the great buffet
or suck on lemons  and retreat?"

"When you've mastered the one within
and how he'll lay his chosen course,
Step forth undaunted and begin
To fight the dragons in your bourse.
The best laid trades go oft askew
While the visceral thunder home;
Both enticements you must eschew,
Your will another chromosome.
Success is but a bastard hope,
Accepted as beyond the drudge,
It's really just a fictive trope,
But free to those who self-adjudge."

"So, young man, it's time I leave you,
My terminal not far ahead,
A final chant and I bid adieu,
Repeat as needed before bed.
Ursa, Ursa, churning nightly,
Is that you knocking on my door?
I just heard, but only slightly,
Bear claws scuttling 'cross the floor.
If that's you then, go far away,
But if you linger and cavort,
Provide me with a single day
In which to set a monster short."
 


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