After Thoreau

by David Alpaugh

HENRY DAVID THOREAU lived at Walden, you know,
where he fathered this killer quotation:
"Most men lead lives of quiet desperation."
Words that blow me away! What can I say?
Henry David Thoreau, you're terrific!
Hope you won’t fret if I get a little bit more specific?

Most men lead lives, sick with desperation?
Don't all women lead lives of cyclic menstruation?
Nor, I think, will anyone challenge this notation:
Most poets lead lives of quiet publication.
(Unlike robots who lead lives of clanky automation
Or Judas Priest who leads a life of deafening vibration.)
Able whores lead busy lives of abundant fornication!
Pole dancers dizzy lives of redundant pornification!
Timothy Leary led a life of dazed imagination.
The Octomom leads a life of crazed insemination.
Exterminators, killing-lives of pest eradication.
Plastic surgeons, filling-lives of chesty augmentation.
La Leche-Leaguers lead lives bucking for lactation
While legislators concentrate on fucking with taxation.
Paroled convicts lead lives of loosed penal-ization
Viagra users lead lives of goosed penile-ization.
Celibate priests, wed to lives of transubstantiation,
Are sometimes led by altar boys to pants-substantiation.
Bulemics lead convulsive lives, abusing gurgitation.
Urologists, repulsive lives, perusing urination.
Waterboarders lead lives of drenched interrogation.
Joe, the plumber, a wrenched life of presidential confrontation!
Sullenberger leads a life of gutsy aviation.
Timmy Geithner leads a life of nutsy stimulation.
Osama led a furtive life, aided by spelunkers.
Obama, an assertive life, aided by cash-for-clunkers.
Saddam Hussein led a life of reckless annexation —
And WMDs, lack of which caused Bush extreme vexation.
Jimmy Carter led a life of rocketing inflation.
Lance Armstrong, a life of sprocketing gyration.
Nostradamus led a life of shrewd prognostication.
Bernie Madoff led a life of pseudo-speculation.
Magellan was first to lead a life of circumnavigation.
Pasteur's life was, of course, all about Pasteurization.
Undertakers lead lives of burial and cremation
Assured of a fresh supply via transmigration.

Now I'm afraid I must go to my grave
With most of my song still in me.
Squelched by an editorial knave
Who won’t let these lines exceed 50!

I'm itching to go on and on and on—
More than 1000 words end in "ation"!
Feel free to add 900 verses of your own.
It's a great way to ward off desperation.

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