Mr. Vespucci Goes To Columbusland

 The once-and-recent rumpus
Over whether Chris Columbus
Should be credited with discovering something new—
Cuz when he thought he'd found Cipangu
Man, oh, was he ever wrongu—
Well, that debate seems to have sunk beneath the blue.

Because it isn't only recently
That's treated him indecently:
Though they crowned him Admiral of the Ocean Sea,
From the aspect of financial,
His failure was substantial,
Disappointing Ferdinand and Isabee.

Too, his fellow-born Italian
Who west for India was sallyin’
‘Neath England’s colors—went by name of Cabot—
He found no piquant spices,
Only peakéd lands of ices
(Though even so, for England he did grab it).

And seems before them were a score
Who'd crossed from shore to shore—
Excursions mostly transient and brief:
Some maybe branching out,
Or disembarking from a drought;
Still others simply following a Leif.

Though they sailed to lands untainted with
The slums they were acquainted with,
Those mariners must not have had a clue
Of the money to be made
From the trans-Atlantic trade
That would result if they’d just called it something “new”.

Enter Amerigo Vespucci:
Not a soul alive disputes he
Was a man of highest standing in Seville;
Running banks for de Medicis,
Eating caviar and feta cheese,
A high-class snob whose breath would make one ill.

But when Columbus went a-sailing,
And came home and sent a mailing,
His friend Vespucci was included on his list;
At which this financier from Italy
Lamented loud and bitt-aly
The adventures that he realized he'd missed.

Now, about that very hour,
The Medicis fell from power,
Which left Amerigo a jobless, homeless fella;
So he signed up with Ojeda
In '99 and made a
Rather flying trip to northern Venezuella.

It so whetted ‘Spucci’s appetite
That hardly could he napatnight;
He got a well-stocked boat and straightway took a jaunt in it
To the coastlands of Brazil,
And more exotic places still,
And pronounced the land a new-discovered continent.

A man named Waldseemüller
Of mapmaking was the rüler
(Though who appointed him has always been a mystery);
Now, he’d read some propoganda
In Amerigo's own hand-a…
And the rest, I'm sure you know by now, is history.

Cuz this served as pollenization
For a wave of colonization
From Labrador to Tierra De El Fuego
And the whole sea dog community
Saw a golden opportunity—
Thus, since then, Atlantic trade ships night-and-day go.

All this left our poor Colombo,
He of asseverations jumbo,
As the global-logistics-challenged goat—
From his lack of finding gold-hordes
To the conduct of his cohorts,
It's safe to say…Columbus missed the boat.

And like Colón, who gained position
Based on promised acquisition,
Are those today who get your vote then dump ya,
And live just as they please
In the land of incumbencies…
No wonder it's called the District of Columbia.

                                                      —Anon A. Mousigo

                                                                                                 ©2006