Caligula’s Barges

By | 10 November 2003

All pleasure is bitter ash.
His least known extravagances lay sunken.
For a thousand years, fish attached soft eggs
to gold trim decks, womb-grey walls harboured
young generations, black-striped, brown
chequered juveniles strode gangways, beat up
on interspecies rivalries; evolution’s fascism.
The next emperor wanted some of this too.
Drained lakes of blood to get the real thing;
Caligula’s pleasure barges, hulls sundered
his excesses housed in concrete bunkers.
The other prince (darker one) having
lost his fun with things Italian; burned them.
The SS unimpressed; seahorse as senator.

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