If in one day you’ve consumed liquors, smokes, feasts, and birth control,
then you are the king of our times.
If you’ve been fat from a home-delivered, chef-prepared dinner
of chicken breast, speckled with imported spice like black pepper,
of chocolate brews, vanilla puddings, and honey biscuits,
of ripe, yellow pineapple slices — in November no less!
If your kingliness had your fare in excess,
cutting aluminum knives on painted dishes,
washing down crumbs with tea or coffee swishes,
and numbing the fullness with an aspirin
whilst rejecting countless jesters on Netflix,
then you’re indeed the lavish king of our times.
If your highness has had your second private bath in one week,
ascended from the clear waters toward a heavy robe, hung neat —
one ornate, royal purple, wrapped rightly ’round your majesty —
and henceforth honored your body with the cotton tapestry;
If you’ve carefully adorned your eminence with something shiny —
even if it’s only small gilded wear from Claire’s jewelry;
If you’ve admired this fashion in reflections and mirrors,
and mounted self-portraits to see your beauty ever clearer;
If you’ve played Monopoly and sported impractical shoes;
If the messengers rush to you to recite the latest news;
If you’ve read and interpreted your own religion’s sources and texts
to hear voiced translations and explanations from Google next,
then you’ve had all the luxuries and more than a king of past times.
If you’ve let your home turn to ruins and kept hermits for friends,
then you’re a king whose opulence was rebranded quotidian.
Your status has been afforded by dimes and doled out in dozens.
Your access deemed cultural artifacts as empty replicates.
Sharing nobility’s comforts turned charms to necessities.
For you to have the same is to turn rituals to routines.
Their willed neglect made style of your craft to make most of your means.
They said Dove soap dirties your hands and your hands dirtied their things.
They washed off lead face paint to become your home’s lead paint chippings,
and they tricked you into believing you’re not our rightful king.
Most rare, an adored legacy, now succeeded with these rhymes.
With this, you have the most that every king has sought to find,
and all the embellishments of a king in the best times.