Was there a special Mess you had in mind, sir?
If you could be a little more specific
As you can see weve every size and kind, sir,
From In Your Face to Mildly Soporific.
Adultery is very popular
Its our perennial favorite, you could say:
The Shocking Pink? Most customers prefer
Discreeter models, like this Sordid Gray.
Self-poisonings are on sale, and very buyable:
We stock Old Fogeys Alcoholic Haze,
The Sixties Acid Test, and this reliable
La Mode Cocaine; its ultra-chic these days.
Loony obsessions can be quite attractive
Religious Manias are on that wall,
They come in Solitary or Interactive;
Some say they make the biggest Mess of all.
Theres Basic Selfishness, a classic line,
And always guaranteed to stay in style;
I know I couldnt function without mine
It makes a Mess thats wonderfully worthwhile.
Still not convinced? A canny customer!
Ive one more product that might interest you:
This cut-price Boredom is a beauty, sir
And itll do what all the others do.
This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 24 Number 1, on page 55
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