A big sale is coming, the marketing of a century

Elvis and Marilyn and JFK have been spotted

in megamalls where cartoon characters hand out

coupons to the bargain hunting classes

Kings and queens and small time dictators

open glitzy dungeons to pay for ancestral castles

and the President’s memoir is already out for bid

I watch the honored saloonkeepers of my childhood

scramble to go global with ancient family recipes,

charlatans rush to the internet to hawk get-rich deals,

tear-jerk videos of orphans in the Holy Land,

snake oil cures for cancer, old age and low testosterone,

nonsense in tiny jars

The anchor with the practiced grin on cable news

doesn’t know if he should laugh or cry, if it’s time again

to show “All items half off,” play the $9.99 card,

weave more conspiracy theories for bored old men,

or shout, “Collateral damage in Iraq!” “Armageddon!”,

and wonders if anyone in TV land is even listening

or just flipping channels for better deals

When life’s a commercial and kings buffoons

days float away in silly balloons