The Kingdom of Mirth

In the Kingdom of Mirth, everyone did everything backwards.
The motto of the people was
“What is right is wrong and what is wrong is right.
The kingdom is always first.”
After all there is no better way to obtain
The willing cooperation of our friends
Than by forcing them to do what we want.

When I was a child, I would visit the kingdom
Every night in my dreams.
At some point my dreams
Became my reality
And my reality became
My dreams.

In the kingdom, the most incapable
People were promoted
And the most capable people
Were demoted.
The king’s brother Fred
Was the head
Of the Royal Army
And the king’s cousin Davy
Ran the Navy.

When the kingdom lost the war
The king and queen
Celebrated their loss
With a victory parade.
The dead remained unburied
And the living were
Buried alive.
In the kingdom,
The people served the rulers
And if you said something enough
Times it came true.

Meanwhile the rich became richer
And the poor became poorer
Until the rich no longer had anybody
To sell their goods and services.
The rich became fatter and fatter,
Consuming goods faster and faster
Until there was nothing left
And the land was polluted.

Neighbors started to shoot neighbors
So the people demanded more guns
So they could shoot their neighbors
To protect themselves.
Soon, they started to shoot
Their neighbors’ children
So they demanded even
More guns to protect themselves.

The kingdom was famed
For its open policy toward
New immigrants so it built
Walls to protect themselves
Against foreigners and cages to
Imprison their children
To discourage them
From coming.

And everyone blamed everyone else
So anyone who complained
Was beat up or threatened with harm.
If no one complained,
Surely all the kingdom’s
Problems would go away.

Mark Kodama is a trial attorney and former newspaper reporter who lives in Washington, D.C. His short stories and poems have been published in anthologies, newspapers, journals, magazines and on-line blogs. Read other articles by Mark.