"Weather"

Original Text: 
Ambrose Bierce, The Cynic's Word Book (New York: Doubleday, 1906), p. 140. Republished as The Devil's Dictionary (New York: Dover, 1958). PS 1097 D4 1958 Robarts Library.
Weather, n. The climate of an hour. A permanent topic of conversation among persons whom it does not interest, but who have inherited the tendency to chatter about it from naked arboreal ancestors whom it keenly concerned. The setting up of official weather bureaus and their maintenance in mendacity prove that even governments are accessible to suasion by the rude forefathers of the jungle.
1Once I dipt into the future far as human eye could see,
2And I saw the Chief Forecaster, dead as any one can be--
3Dead and damned and shut in Hades as a liar from his birth,
4With a record of unreason seldome paralleled on earth.
5While I looked he reared him solemnly, that incandescent youth,
6From the coals that he'd preferred to the advantages of truth.
7He cast his eyes about him and above him; then he wrote
8On a slab of thin asbestos what I venture here to quote--
9For I read it in the rose-light of the everlasting glow:
10"Cloudy; variable winds, with local showers; cooler; snow."
Halcyon Jones.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1998.
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