The Brothers Grimm Begin Their Shift

Hail the piper! Once dressed in
The brilliant green of ancient Europe’s
Now defunct hills and moors

He stands dejected, now
Unemployed. His livelihood,
It seems, destroyed

By endless, thoughtless streams
Of mechanical dreams. His only followers
Now the dusty vermin of Florence

The parasitic army of life. They
Have come up from behind; some
Hungry, some crippled, some lonely

Some crazy, some blind. They don’t
Know what they want to find but
They will follow without specific

Goals in mind. The man, the myth
His wooden reed erect; outcast
Archaic, anachronistic reject

Still parades through the cobbled
Avenues and shady glades and
Market squares. A little shabbily

Dressed he assumes fantastic airs
As if the children of the hamlet were
Still quite securely in tow.

But stoically he proceeds as if
He doesn’t know. And if he is a figment
Of the past it surely doesn’t show.