In 2016, during a major Bob Dylan phase, I wrote the poem below as lyrics for a Bob Dylan parody song. In honor of Bob Dylan’s 79th birthday on May 24th, in anticipation of his new album coming June 19th, and in disappointment of coronavirus having temporarily paused Dylan’s thirty-two-year-old Never Ending Tour, I dusted off these lyrics and present them here. Despite this poem’s humor, it also bears something of a frightening relevance for today.
“The Senator’s Dream (A Bob Dylan Parody)”
Well, I woke as a human in a vampire world.
They all stood around me and their lips were curled.
I jumped up in bed and grabbed my cross necklace, heart.
That’s when a nurse with a terrier began to bark.
I looked on down from the bed where I sat:
Man, my blood was drippin’ into a vat
With two little kids playin’ in it!
In came a doctor. I asked, “What’s up with me?”
He stared at me so lifelessly and said, “You tell me!
You were one of us, and, but, then you changed.
Now we don’t know whether you are right or strange.
And here I am a’thinkin’ you were one of those. . .”
I reached down, grabbed the vat, hit him on the nose.
I didn’t wait to hear the rest!
I was runnin’ down the hallway, almost to the door,
When I nearly fainted, and I fell to the floor.
A big ole’ guard, he grabbed me, and he cuffed my hands.
A nurse, she said so quaintly, “Come back to the sands.”
A flock of nurses, doctors strapped me onto a table;
The nurse before knelt down, said, “My name is Mable,”
But I didn’t want any part of her!
They studied me in and out and to the zoo.
To tell the truth, I’d never had so much to do.
They dressed me all in robes and a string of pearls.
They promised me they would always call me Earl.
But a kid jumped in and bit me for the fame.
I’m turnin’ back again before . . . oh, that’s a shame.
I was just getting’ used to well-cooked steak!
Seven palm trees swayin’ in a winter’s wind.
Activists all tellin’ me, “Begin again.”
Money, real estate, and a brand new Porsche
I’ll drive on my escape from the mob with the torch.
And for all of this I just keep my back in a seat.
Forget it, I’m a vampire, now that’s no deceit.
Play requiem for a conscience!
Somewhere in this weird old dream there is a truth,
If only that you really never know who’s smooth.
If I conquered every single city in this world,
And my banner on every street they did unfurl,
I guess I’d still only be a lifeless soul:
A dirty politician in a greasy hole.
That’s it, folks!