Philanthropaths & Puppets 

by Susan J. Bryant (April 2024)

The Agitator —by George Grosz, 1928


So Rose the Puppeteer

He pulls the strings of those his treasures bless—
They grovel in the grip of this foul fiend.
He’s conjured chaos, stirred up strife and schemed
To ruin all the Western world esteemed.
He steers the politicians and the press—
He pulls the strings of those his treasures bless.

He fuels and fans the searing flare of stress
That rises ever higher by the day.
His dirty dollar paves the wicked way
For curs to traffic death and human prey.
He sullies all that’s pure to gain success.
He pulls the strings of those his treasures bless.

His marionettes assist his lawlessness—
They’re paid to keep the streets replete with crime.
He parties in the gutters slick with slime
While toasting thugs who never serve their time.
He wins when morals melt and life’s a mess.
He pulls the strings of those his treasures bless.

This odious golden goose of evil bent
Exudes the sulphurous stench of vile intent.

Gates of Hell

We hear him claim he cares for humankind.
He has a wily aim, a ghoulish goal.
He plays a smiley messianic role—
This savior’s out to trick the trusting soul.
While pumping poison through the heart and mind
We hear him claim he cares for humankind.

He aches to make this oafish globe refined,
To skim the scum and wipe the dumb from sight,
To spike the vein and bake the brain in fright—
Depopulation is his guiding light.
That’s why he’s keen to leave the truth behind
When claiming that he cares for humankind.

When greener deals with sharks and shills are signed,
He steals the people’s wheels and meals and joy.
He has a meaty money-making ploy –
Sham Frankenham from bullshit spit and soy.
He cons, connives and robs the masses blind
While claiming that he cares for humankind.

This barbarous sugar-baddy of ill creed
Ensures his killer deeds are guaranteed.



Marionettes maneuvered by their master
Bounce and bend and bow and bob in time
To devastating dirges of disaster
Sung from scripts the wooden choirs mime.
Their tune is full of fuss and fear and sorrow—
That woeful, worn out score we’ve heard before.
It plays today. It will again tomorrow.
It bores through badgered brains until they’re sore.
They dance us through the perils of the planet.
They point out all the traitors we can trust—
Those rats who tax our liberty then ban it—
These dummies tell us all is jolly just.
Dependent on a cash-cow puppeteer
They’re steered throughout their treasonous career.


Table of Contents


Susan Jarvis Bryant is originally from the U.K., but now lives on the coastal plains of Texas. Susan has poetry published on The Society of Classical Poets, Lighten Up Online, Snakeskin, Light, Sparks of Calliope, and Expansive Poetry Online. She also has poetry published in The Lyric, Trinacria, and Beth Houston’s Extreme Formal Poems and Extreme Sonnets II anthologies. Susan is the winner of the 2020 International SCP Poetry Competition and was nominated for the 2022 Pushcart Prize. She has just published her first two books, Elephants Unleashed and Fern Feathered Edges.

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