If you’re ever floating down the Congo

be sure to visit the small village of Gbadolite,

home to the stately pleasure-dome of Mobutu

the former Ozymandias of Zaire.

For twenty dollars the squatters in the palace,

his former soldiers and their families,

will let you have a look around the place.


It’s everything you imagine a crazed dictator

would find befitting his inflexible will:

dried fountains and greenish jacuzzis,

conveyor belts in the kitchen that served

pâté and chilled salmon on Limoges china,

a spacious sunroof of red steel girders,

a statue of his first wife, Marie-Antoinette.

R. Charboneau


Photo Credit: Sean Smith for the Guardian

2 thoughts on “Ozymandias Revisited

  1. You betcha, I’ll be sure to visit all pleasure-domes that come my way! How cool that his first wife was called Marie-Antoinette. It’s a chilling coincidence. Unless that was her nickname? (not sure which would be more disturbing)

    Thank you for the tantalizing introduction, Monsieur. I’ll find my way from here.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s