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Saturday, May 19, 2007


by Earl J. Wilcox

One U S President.

One Chief of Staff Andrew Card.

One Absent Yet Present Vice-President.

One First-Term White House Legal Counsel Alberto Gonzales.

One Blanched Attorney General John Ashcroft.

One Fast Acting US Attorney General James Comey.

One Fast-Fading Surveillance Law.

One Karl Rove.

Prepare the intrigue by removing the gall bladder from a blanched Attorney General John Ashcroft in hospital; marinate with sedatives.

Add a dash of Bourne-brand thrillers.

Separate two or three yokels—a Card and a Gonzales will suffice, though any number of others with same textures and fermenting qualities would do for a pinch—from the White House since the President and the Rove should remain tasteless in this recipe.

Arrange yokels onto a bed of Ashcroft, there to rise with the pale signature of Ashcroft on to prolong illegal wiretapping and other surveillance procedures.

Take care not to allow a drop of Comey to enter the bed of Ashcroft prior to the addition of the yokels, for Comey will harden the Ashcroft against the normal action of the yokels.

Results will vary with this recipe and may not be evident for three or more years after preparation. Some ingredients such as the Alberto and Card may lose their fermentation. Card may no longer rise to the level of Chief of Staff, having been removed from the White House pantry, and the memory enzymes of the Alberto, serving subsequently itself as Attorney General, may conveniently perish. Further complications that may hinder full enjoyment of this dish: if the fomenter---Rove---is asked to testify in any Congressional hearings, it doubtless will rise to the occasion and fail to provide enough fermentation to suit the House's appetites. Ultimately, most diners during this political season may find the dish filled with maggots and learn to choose more carefully the commander-and-chef.

Earl J. Wilcox founded The Robert Frost Review, which he edited for more than a decade. His poetry was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize.