This piece is a modest tribute to Ian Doescher, author of the nifty bestseller William Shakespeare’s Star Wars. Ladies and gentlemen, get out your handkerchiefs.
(Princess Leia, dressed entirely in black, stands before a motley assembly of mourners. A veil partly obscures her weeping visage from prying eyes, as she adjusts one of the headphones made of hair before beginning to speak.)
Dartholemew Robertson Vader,
we are gathered here today
to commit thy Siberian cyber-cadaver
to burial at space in the name of thine
insidious empire. Thou canst now resteth
in peace after having made perpetual war
upon the galaxy for eons, having no respect
for us plebeian peons in they planet-
plundering reign. And yet we, in our
camaraderie cultivated by compassion–
unless it is in fact the other way around–
and a spirit of eternal forgiveness, do
mourn thy passage with the self-same
obsequies and sniffling sorrow of obsequious
sheep, knowing an identical fate
eventually awaits us, when we join you
in the junkyard of disintegrating meteors
and spaceships in the ever-expanding
cosmic scrap-heap that surrounds our souls.
We surrender our resentment towards thee
for having annihilated Tatooine with a laser
fired from the Death Star. Thou wert only
human within thy crusty exoskeleton,
laborious respiratory special effects
and menacing stentorian Verizon-enriching
baritone notwithstanding. Hence, we weep
in the wake of thy passage, ill-advised
on how to exist in a universe without evil,
one supervised by the likes of my brother,
Luke Skywalker, and Sir Micholas Mouse,
instead of thy reliably robotic incarnation
of Zorro in shades bedecked with a Nazi
war helmet and some twinkling lights
in thy heartless, hollow chest.
Plastic to plastic, dust to dust.
The Lord giveth, the Lord taketh away.
And in the event that thou hast bribed
thy way into heaven, as we suspect must
be the case in this cosmos unfair and unjust,
we have only one thing left to say, and that’s:
Have a nice day.
Amen, in the name of advanced
(The rest of the mourners dutifully intone, “Amen,” and the streamlined casket containing the remains of the Dark Lord Vader is shot at light speed into some unseen omnivorous black hole, the next best thing to heaven.)
Dedicated to the Memory of Sir Lou Reed and My Wife’s Grandmother, both of whom left the stage yesterday. The poem is in no way an attempt to equate them with George Lucas’s nefarious sadomasochistic creation. But since it’s about a funeral, I figured they must have inspired it somehow; besides, I was going to write about them anyway, but they got pre-empted by a blip on the radar screen.