Charles A. Swanson
|"Yin and Yang" Ink & Watercolor on Paper|
By J. Artemus Gordon
There they were, boy and girl, she light,
he darkness. That boy could speak no word,
no word at all, that sounded kind.
Claudius knew, for the wee elf practiced
sarcasm, satire, hyperbole, understatement,
double entendre, tongue-in-cheek,
equivocation, white lie, pun, speciousness,
prevarication, duplicity, dissimulation,
double-talk—well, you get the idea.
Claudius knew the facility of language,
also, the wink, the nod, the shoulder shrug,
the look away, the grin, the gesture
to say that the words meant something else.
Brat-boy spoke vituperation, scorn,
disparagement, ridicule, outright insult.
And the more he said, and the blacker
he looked, the more she beamed,
fascinated. All this work, all this work,
all this subtle turning of the screw, all
this to make him detestable, and she loves
him all the more. It was then the fairy knew
he would never understand humans.