A SMALL ODE ON HOME SECURITY


Elicited by the decision of the Otago University Proctor to sneak around private student flats thieving

Dunedin flats are cold and damp,
Responsible for ague and cramp,
With bath-sponge walls and landlord hassles,
But Scarfies’ dives are still their castles
(Though if you think it be more meet,
Their hovel is their Castle Street),
And though the boards that girt about
Be rotten, who would dare to rout
the fragile safety hole provides
for harried rat where rat abides?
At Troy, cynic Achilles slew
Tenes and Troilus in full view
Of Phoebus in his temple’s heart,
Thus did the god guide Paris’ dart.
But no Achilles is the Proctor,
And many an Aotearoan doctor
Inhaled the herb while at Med School,
Ergo, I pray Sir, who’s the fool?
A Proctor’s beat lies in the pale
Of campus, Sir, so epic fail,
And if you think such prowling fine,
Dost likewise you the washing line
Eye-up for dainty bits of lace
To sniff and finger?
                                    Such disgrace
Is that of Peeping Toms a-twitting,
So verily, keep to your knitting
Unless asked in to fraternise,
Invited
stay out otherwise.
You’re not a plodding copper now,
And you’ve no warrant anyhow,
Nor have you any valid cause
To snatch up in your sticky paws
A student’s decorative vase
(Now tell me, does that rhyme with stars,
Or does it, short vowel, rhyme with maze?)
As you did then, in manic craze,
The women’s health issue of Critic,
The periodical specific
(Haunted, no doubt, in dreams by flood,
Tsunami-scale, of menstrual blood).
My question, therefore, Proctor Scott,
Is, in Heaven’s name, just what
It is you think you’re playing at?
Otago has a Law School, mate.
Don’t, when a household is asleep
Or absent, on your mission creep
Around the place; it’s mission creep,
Entering sans permission, creep,
To bong-nap, while it might seem fun,
The Crimes Act 1961,
At least in theory, holds a view
Contrary to the one you do.
As Hemi Baxter sagely notes
“The dead,” the Poet coughs and quotes,
“Can get good housing – Thomas Bracken,
Smellie, McLeod, McColl, McCracken,
A thousand founding fathers…”
bones
Rest undisturbed beneath their stones,
Except poor Larnach (e’en the dead
Can find it hard to get ahead);
Mayhap the bounder whom’d him wrong
Turned Larnach’s skull into a bong,
Though be he scoundrel, thief or debter,
Dear Proctor Scott, thou art no better.

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