To ignore the thorns of virtue’s rose is
like trying not to think of that hidebound
elephant. The more I’d quit the mammoth,
the surer is it that I can’t. The more
I’d free my horny brain of pachyderm,
the larger looms his big and burly frame.
As long as purging woodland fires burn,
I’m sure to find him foraging the plain.
And though, at last, he’s caged and blocked from view
outside the bedroom door, his proboscis
tickles my nose until I smell a zoo.
Buried in this jungle of neurosis,
I lie in bed with sackcloth for my pants,
stampeded by a herd of elephants.