Regarding the inaugural “poem” . . . Joan Rivers. Atrium. A poet manqué without a poem. Or even a coherent thought. But sexually, racially, politically correct. Living proof Darwin is wrong. The fittest have not survived. Once mute. Now, unfortunately, speaking. Mind-numbing gibberish that would make Ferlinghetti puke. She a species that has not, alas, departed. A liberal dinosaur, a dry token.

This day crying out. But about what? To whom? And nothing rhymes. Privileged beyond her wildest imaginings. Widely hailed by other frauds. Other shadows with no place to hide. Human Oaklands with no there there. Black. A brooding darkness. Created a little lower than your average men’s room graffiti. No destiny other than to bore to tears. Angels shrieking and running for cover. She rushing in where they fear to tread. Her mouth spilling words in no particular order. Bald-faced ignorance. Cant cubed.

The Rocks, too, cry out—in pain. I know how they feel. Mindless meanderings. Beamed around the world. Only God knows what those in Papua New Guinea think. Somewhere, Robert Frost weeps. Each of us wondering: Huh? Afraid to say this. Mayans everywhere considering a class-action suit; Angelous contemplating a name change. Each of us a bordered country, an island. All of us inhibited by our intelligence. Unable to dig it. Grieved because we have a will to meaning. Pondering puzzling phrases. Heads shaking. Debris on our breast. Mere words. Stupid. Dumb. Prose pollution. A verbal oil spill.

Rocks? Rivers? Trees? Speaking trees?! The Tree and the Rock are one? One what? The Kru? What the hell is (are?) the Kru? A black thing? I don’t get it. But, yes, I’m praying for a dream. You bet. The dream being that this, this—this utterance will, at some point, make sense. No way. Hopes repeatedly dashed.

Planted by the TV river, falling into it. Going under for the third time. Forced to watch a seeker, desperate for gain. I, the victimized Inaugural-watcher. This bright morning becoming history that, indeed, cannot be unlived. Too bad. A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying less than nothing.

Hearts cast down. Hopes stillborn. Eyes crossing. Brows furrowing. Remote control buttons being punched. Other channels being sought. A dream deferred, becoming a nightmare. The English language being assassinated. Where’s the Secret Service when we really need them?

The horizon, too, leaning forward—having fallen asleep. The pulse of this fine day has ceased. A Code Blue. Dial 911. No life signs. Death without dignity. Our palms sweat. A fear of being yoked with this “poet” eternally. Cruel and unusual punishment if ever there was one. Horror in every classroom in America that there will be a pop quiz on this abomination that will be 40 percent of one’s final grade.

The blessed Mastodon. And those other species no longer here. I envy them. They have the grace to look up and out at those Rocks, Rivers, Trees—and, yes, up and out at the Kru, too—and say simply, very simply, and truthfully, with hope: we did not have to hear this.