The Ghost of Scandals Past Late-2006

Gerald Ford
the president who pardoned Richard “Tricky Dicky” Nixon died
and a chorus of praise arises that “he healed the Nation”.

Meanwhile (back at the ranch again)
from the gushing leaking stinking sore
under the band-aide of that pardon issues
in the form of our current vice-president
(Gerald Ford’s former chief of staff who with his mentor
Sec. of Defense then and now, Donald Rumsfeld
carried out a damage limiting operation of Nixon’s crime)
Darth “the Dick” Cheney, comes the same mass surveillance, spying,
abuse of civil rights, torture and murder which came to be known
as that second rate botched burglary, Watergate, or in academic parlance
the Imperial Presidency now titled by George Bush’s lawyers Unitary

If we’re all so healed and whole why does the Swift Boating of John Kerry,
the record or the absence there of George Bush’s Air National Guard
and, of course, Dick ‘the Darth” Cheney’s 5 deferments
still provoke such bitter rancor?
Didn’t Gerald Ford heal all that 30 years ago?

Isn’t that all just an arching yellow stream over the dam
like August Pinochet dying without a trial in Chile for the thousands
of deaths and disappearances he presided over after a U.S. backed coup
And then there’s our old Buddy boy Saddam Hussein who was just hanged
in the Green Zone in Baghdad a former C.I.A. asset the U.S. sold WMD.
Wasn’t it the U.S. (that is us) who made him a regional power?


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.