Salome, two millennia ago,
Beguiled King Herod with her loveliness.
He vowed to give her anything she wished
If she would sensually dance for him.
She undulated so seductively,
While every veil fell as leaves off a tree,
That he was overwhelmed with lecherous
Abandon. Thinking she would merely want
The finest jewels of the Orient,
Or some such mundane treasure, he did not
At all consider that her wish would cause
The execution of a holy man!
He ruefully agreed to put the head
Of John the Baptist on a silver charger.
This ghoulish gift Salome gave her mother,
Herodias, the wicked wife of Herod.
Salome's spirit has been incarnate
In many millions of great beauties since,
And Herod's foolish, lewd concupiscence
Has been repeated many times in men
Of ample fortunes, but with sparer sense.
Such men and women are the subject of
These sultry stanzas, which show that the sins
Of men lie not in our protruding members,
But rather, they reside in our crude minds.
Now, we will trace the transmigration of
Salome and the king in modern times:
A scheming naked girl and a panting man.