Ode, Dear

An ode by any other name would
Still read just as obsequious
Any great poet writes an epic ode
Any praiseworthy topic will do!
Wordsworth commended duty –
Pope in high praise of solitude
Keats was prolific at acclaiming
the generally obscure; nightingales
(his poetry literally for the birds)
and his lauding of Grecian urns
still spawns underpaid Greek jokes.

Thomas Gray exalted bards while
Shelley extolled the west wind
Forsaking other directional breezes
Neruda was more the commoner
Praising his socks – woolen, as such

Lacking the adrenal verve of praising
Inanimate objects and lesser birds
I considered writing self-reflective
stanzas of indulgent commendation
But my efforts were, alas, for naught
As I discovered that writing an ode
To ones own-self, patting thine own
Back as it were, puts one in need of
Self-congratulatory chiropractic care
Due to overly climatic contortions

In short, to assert such presumption
I am owed an ode is overtly odious.

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2021

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