William Trowbridge

YA KNOW? | LITTLE-KNOWN ROYAL COGNOMENS
August 10, 2015 Trowbridge William

YA KNOW?

 

It’s been one of those days
when the pot calls the kettle Duane.

when the knuckles of contumely
rap the forehead of resolve,

and the weeds of crime strangle
the begonias of ebullience,

when the morning pills scatter
like roaches under light,

when the P.C., jammed in sleep mode,
dreams it’s a machine gun,

and customer service advises
what sounds like “Die, terpsichor cootie!”

when weltschmerz gets the will
in another hammer-lock,

when the starter chortles “nyuk, nyuk, nyuk,”
and AAA plays you a selection of Yani,

and an ear-worm keeps replaying
the Yani on its amplified banjo.

 

 

 

 

LITTLE-KNOWN ROYAL COGNOMENS

 

Consider Bruno of Campania,
The Laughing Nipple,

thought a misreading
of “The Lord of Naples,”

and Hubert The Shit-and-Flee
of Wessex, named for his battle

tactics, and Bernard of Silesia,
called The Lonely Gonad

following his near-fatal duel
with Rudolph of Bavaria,

The Winged Parsnip, a tag
of uncertain origin. Then

there’s Ragnar of Kalunborg,
The Filled-with-Edam,

in reference to the only
Norse attempt to mummify,

and Stephan of Provence,
deemed The Reeking Flyspeck

by the conquering Armin of Saxony,
then proclaimed Mightier-

Than-The-Flyspeck. Also noteworthy,
Andre of Toulouse, whose queen,

Simone, The Festooned Eggplant,
dubbed him The Tower

of Nose Hair. Finally, we have
The Lousy Murdering

Dung-Brained Bastard
Whom Everybody

Halfway Sane Wants
To See Eaten By Dogs,

a subtitle too widespread
for sole attribution.

William Trowbridge’s seventh poetry collection, Vanishing Point, was published by Red Hen Press in April 2017. He teaches in the University of Nebraska Omaha Low-residency MFA in Writing Program. For more information, see his website at williamtrowbridge.net