Oprah and Peregrine
One morning I saw Oprah step out of a limo
In front of the Plaza Hotel, assistants poured
Onto the sidewalk as she walked regally
Up the steps never glancing at gawkers like me.
For the next two weeks I told everyone,
“I saw Oprah,” basking in rub-off celebrity.
Friends had their stories, many better than mine.
Americans love celebrities, just a glimpse
Makes us feel special. An old phenomenon.
A footnote in Thoreau’s Cape Cod records
A proud glimpse of Peregrine White. Who?
500 years has erased Peregrine’s fame.
Born aboard the Mayflower in Cape Cod Harbor,
November, 1620--the first Massachusetts born settler.
Said the person who chanced to glimpse Peregrine
Shortly before he died at 83, “He was vigorous
And of a comely Aspect to the last…”
Oprah is vigorous and comely and apt to stay that way.
“Altho’ he was in the former part of his Life extravagant”
Certainly something we can say about Oprah …
…”yet [he] was much Reformed in his last years
and died Hopefully.” … Hopefully?
Today’s extravagant celebrities do not seem headed
For Reform. But who can say? Will they die “Hopefully”?
The gossip media will surely let us know.
Perhaps Peregrine deserves a statue with a plaque
Proclaiming him “Original American Celebrity:
A Prototype for Celebrity-hood.”
We of the Chance Glimpse Crowd should remember
“A cat may look at a king but will always be a cat.”