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Australian philosopher, literary critic, legal scholar, and professional writer. Based in Newcastle, NSW. Author of FREEDOM OF RELIGION AND THE SECULAR STATE (2012), HUMANITY ENHANCED (2014), and THE MYSTERY OF MORAL AUTHORITY (2016).

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Birthday poem for Richard Dawkins

Sometimes I can't resist an opportunity to flex my literary muscles by dashing off a sonnet.

Well, it was Richard Dawkins' 66th birthday yesterday - he shares a birthday with this little blog as it turns out. So I wrote the following to celebrate (some of the references, especially in the third quatrain, are a bit obscure, alas):


Richard, you've reached the age of 66,
The number of 9.9 per cent of a Beast.
So, celebrate! The treacheries and tricks
Of priests and critics won't disturb your Feast.

Tomorrow, yes, there's more work to be done:
Delusions to be combatted, and all.
Today, for once, forget it ... and just have fun:
It's only once a year, so have a ball.

Your plethora of parasites - your curse -
Won't go away. Like fleas upon a hound,
They know they're on a good thing. Then there's worse:
Appeasers, pleased to flee the dangerous ground.

So, take a break - there's soon another year,
Defying darkness, misery and fear.


Anonymous said...

Lovely poem...thanks for it :) u can also have a look at my blog where u'll find some useful tips on birthday :) hope to hear from u soon!

Anonymous said...

Hey, great poem! Dawkins would love it.

Russell Blackford said...

He may have seen it, Tony, since I posted a copy on his site. If so, hope he did like it. At least he'll get the joke about fleas, since it's based on a comment of his own about those writers who insist on publishing books with titles like The Dawkins Delusion.