Of course, you already know the story of my discovery, which has brought me fame, if reflected, and glory, having been covered extensively in The National Enquirer, the Journal of Irreproducible Results, and in numerous interviews and features on Fox News, including a truly delightful morning spent with the Friends where, I must say, they provided this surprised guest the most delicious refreshments during the commercial breaks, including a crème brûlée that simply made one’s mouth water, accompanied by a sixty-year old port whose impressive tannins struck one’s unsuspecting taste buds like an electric eel in rut.
But to my tale. You have all heard it: how I was invited to the south of France for a short visite with my old school chum Georges and his wife Marie-Louise-Jennifer. Of course, given the subsequent publicity, I have kept the precise location of their quaint eighteenth-century domicile très confidentiele, as it were, to protect their privacy and that of their children, Marc-Joseph, Tiffanie-May, and Chuck.
Through a week, then extending it to two and then three, I played the raconteur to my friends, telling them again and again of the fascinating political intrigues of our Department of Comparative Literature and of the subtle intricacies of the Miltonian sonnet. Each evening after dinner and cognac my hosts would anxiously glance at each other, wondering, I suppose, which of my stories I would tell that night!
How pleasant the nights as they consumed snifter after snifter while I talked!
I believe it was a Friday that, a fit of ennui having struck us all, Georges loaded his two pigs, Al and Maybelle, into a trailer behind his Peugeot and we took a short drive through the charming Dordogne countryside. Inquiring as to our destination, I was told we were motoring to a great forest a few kilometers away.
Soon we arrived; Georges loosed the happy pigs from the trailer; and a-truffling we went!
After several exhausting hours of search, a few brushes with some sort of terrible itch-inducing fern (striking with particular intensity my most private areas), and only a few samples of the precious fungus found, and those given to the ravenous porcines, Georges and his lovely, well-fed wife made the decision to abandon their quest and return to their humble chateau on Rue Pétain.
Having, apparently, forgotten about their guest, they strode quickly back to their car, nudging their pigs along with a stick, and were about to drive away, when I noticed, waved, and gave chase – and immediately slipped on a nasty little objet, a small piece of fresh excrement, recently, I suspect, shat by Al. I fell, and, while in flight, as it were, my eyes landed upon a sheaf of papers underneath Al’s petit produit.
Stifling my disgust, I reached through the putrid waste and urine to find an ancient, discarded manuscript: which the world knows now as the newest masterpiece of world literature, the Trumpiad.
So transfixed was I by my discovery that I did not notice Georges and Marie-Louise-Jennifer speeding away, but no matter, as I sat and read the entire epic from cover to cover. Luckily, my academic training being in Indo-European-Greek-Early Bronx languages, I was able to comprehend the truly extraordinary majesty of its verse. I cannot describe to you the sheer joy, ecstasy even, of being the first human in generations to set eyes on the worn pages!
As the hours passed and darkness fell, accompanied by a bone-chilling cold, I realized I had to leave the forest or risk serious illness – or, heaven forbid, an attack by boars or whatever other sort of primitive creature inhabited those parts. So, after some difficulty – Georges’ cell phone being, evidently, out of order – I was able to make contact with Uber.
Being possessed of typically Gallic reserve, Georges and his family did not demonstrate great emotion or shed tears of relief at my safe return, but instead rather gruffly ordered the cook to put on another plate. I must confess, however, I could not contain my excitement at my find, and so I regaled them with an ad lib translation of the entire work, with commentary, that night, which kept us awake until the very early morning hours.
Finally, as Dawn herself arose, we slept, and as has been recounted many times, there happened a great tragedy. For that morning, the aforementioned cook, a true Alsatian idiot, set off to the local market to procure fresh trout for our midday repast – and wrapped his purchase, that fetid, decomposing poisson, in the precious pages of our epic, ruining the priceless manuscript forever. Of course, when I learned of this catastrophe, I loudly expressed my righteous anger, at which point Georges and Marie-Louise-Jennifer suggested, rather firmly, that I take my leave, which only added to my indignation.
But the world of literature has been saved, thanks to moi, as I am blessed with a photographic memory, and so the Trumpiad lives, reproduced in the following few pages.
Of the author, ὅ Βόνηρος, “Boneros,” or as we have come to familiarly refer to the great Bard today, “Boner,” we know little. Perhaps he was blind, as legend holds, or perhaps not; perhaps he was a simple peasant working the fields of Alabama, or perhaps one of the Trump’s inner circle, choosing to hide his identity and his glorious talent. It is not even out of the realm of possibility that our poet is the great Trump himself, singing his own wondrous tale!
I have blathered enough, I suppose. Dear reader, it is time for you now to enjoy this great masterpiece! I have but one request – and I pray you will grant it – that you read this aloud so that you (and all around you) can fully appreciate the poet’s marvelous use of both diction and meter.
Oxford, October 2018