sumerian literature for fun and profit

I just learned that the first writer in recorded history was a woman who wrote political poetry: her name is Enheduanna. I thought her hymn to Inana seemed very fresh, so I had a go at translating it into the vernacular:

The good ole boy, the maverick, holding his own in the Beltway set and a world leader, son of 41, darling of the Grand Old Party, the consummate politician who has transformed the executive branch in ways even Reagan would admire, is President, and the buck stops with him. Congress grovels at his feet. He does whatever he wants. He’s got political capital and he intends to spend it. He’s got the country on a leash.

He is the War on Terror and he is the Terror. We’re all scared shitless down here, I can tell you. Everything he says frightens the crap out of us. There’s no accountability, and God knows what’s going to happen. Who can stand up to him? Meanwhile fire and death rain on New York, and New Orleans drowns in a sewer.

Something about him makes the Democrats unable to tie their own shoes. Pratfalls galore, but it isn’t funny. People burn and drown and he arrives in a very nice suit with spin doctors and cameras and a crack security detail, for a press conference. Wherever he holds a press conference, there is despair. He believes in his own virtue, which makes him more evil than we could ever have imagined. Compassionate conservatism! Remember that? Anyone, Bueller?

He has been the single worst catastrophe of this last tormented decade. Yet to oppose him is to invite censure! Those who speak up for the suffering and the dead are scorned as vicious fools. He does not lack for toadies.

In his mouth language turns to lies. When he speaks of life he means death. When he promises tax cuts he means that the poor will pay for the greed and stupidity of the rich. In the face of defeat he says, Mission Accomplished. He baptises the nation’s children with blood, and looks at what he has done, and says that it is good.

Across the wide and bewildered nation, his deeds blot out the sun. He turns midday into darkness. Brothers turn on their sisters, and parents attack their children. His words frighten not only his own people, but everyone on earth. This man rules the only superpower in a unipolar world! People from every nation look at Iraq and think: Are we next? He leaves no bad deed undone. The Grand Old Party is filled with pride.

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