Late Empire

  1. (Antimony, Beryllium, Cobalt)
  3. —See me leaving my climate-controlled gate-house-guarded condo complex while my
  4.              mini-video-surveillance system installed in the
  5.              puce living room drapes records
  6. every gesture the babysitter makes lest she
  7.              neglect to wash her hands or should she drivel on the phone with her friends
  8.                         (these people
  9.                         do have friends) or
  10.              place the spoon absent-mindedly in Precious Baby’s mouth
  11. while Precious Baby’s parents (we) are out savoring Châteauneuf du Pape
  12.                                                                                     and Tomme de Savoie
  13.              our appreciation of which is evidence of our
  14.                         education, some
  15. Babies being Precious and others
  16. manifestly less so, likely to grow up
  17. (if they grow up) into those little brown people whose
  18.              destiny it is to kneel before me and buff the calluses from my feet,
  19.              useful,
  20. such people, admittedly, but not
  21. in the category of Precious, little brown people
  22. being on the whole too numerous, more and more too numerous
  23. (rumors from the provinces) for this planet, and where do they get off
  24.              breeding like that cutting down trees burning them up and
  25.              clogging the air over my
  26.                         patio and Provençal rock garden—
  27.                         it’s foreign clogged air—
  28. Suffering should stay where it belongs, on the front page of the newspaper
  29.              which nobody reads anymore and for good reason and
  30.              if people have the bad judgment to get born in the middle of
  31.                         a drought or a flood on some other continent, so
  32.                         be it, I can hardly
  33. be held responsible, thank God we have border police, imperfect but still
  34.              on the whole performing their duties, while our mercenaries protect
  35.                                                                                     the supply lines
  36. from discordant elements (more
  37. little brown people) so
  38. Precious Minerals rare earths wines and cheeses keep flowing
  39.              on schedule to those who know how to appreciate
  40. them, brown people still laboring
  41.              in mines extracting tungsten platinum magnesium and niobium which
  42.              keep our chips chipping our cables cabling and our standard of living
  43.                         up to our standards (rumors
  44. from the provinces not-
  46. withstanding— )