Corrections to the blogosphere, the consensus, and the world

Thursday, February 28, 2013

I'll be damned

Reading an article in the New Yorker I realise that in some fifty years of reading W. H. Auden’s “Epitaph on a Tyrant”:
Perfection of a kind was what he was after,
And the poetry he invented was easy to understand;
He knew human folly like the back of his hand,
And was greatly interested in armies and fleets;
When he laughed, respectable senators burst with laughter,
And when he cried the little children died in the streets.
I have simply transposed the verbs in the last line -
           And when he died the little children cried in the streets.
to make it utterly meaningless, or at least completely different.

I read too fast, with too little attention, driven by an urge to have read rather than a desire to read; but even for me, this is spectacular. 

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