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Shrimp 'n Grits

Swimp Mon still dreamin’
Lee Walton

Earlier this summer, Mayor Riley announced his unabashed plans for a 526 Parkway across James and Johns Islands, complete with at-grade intersections, the quintessential bike paths and 45 MPH speed limits. Now, thinly disguised as “accessory dwelling units”, Riley and his merry little band of progressive city planners want to encourage work force, rent-controlled housing all over Charleston. One can only imagine the necessary zoning variances for building setbacks, lot coverage limitations, parking and the multitude of other winks and nods required to make this latest half-baked nightmare work.

The following poem was first published over a year and a half ago as Mayor J. Pericles Riley was just unveiling what later became his $142 million world-class vision to renovate the Gaillard Auditorium. Its intent was to demonstrate just how out of touch with reality Riley has become and how untempered by today’s reality he remains.

Wuh bin da colluh o’ de sky ‘n da Swimp Mon wu’ll?

Swimp Mon dreamin’

De national debt, it be in duh zillions,
But Swimp Mon, plan tuh spend mo’ millions.
‘E got no clue who be gwine tuh pay,
‘N still be dreamin’ o’ da long pas’ day.

De Swimp Mon ‘e jus’ be out’uh touch,
‘N nebber lis’en tuh City Council much.
‘E own word be tuh ‘e mos’ dear,
‘Sep when Fruit Mon wisper in ‘e ear.

Dem high-roll time still in ‘e plan,
But mo’ like foot step in da san’.
‘E same ol’ vision be cut in stone
Dat use dem taxpayer tuh pay dem loan.

Now da Gaillard Scheme be ‘e latest ‘lusion
Tuh be funded wit’ mo’ TIF collusion.
‘E tin’k mo’ ho’tel ‘struction fund dat bond,
But dat dream be wit’ dem tourist gwine.

Dem King Street sto’ still shuttin’ down
Be proof Swimp Mon plan jus’ be unsoun’.
‘E got no care dat dem folk be hurtin’,
‘N still da Wizard behind de curtin.

‘E ignore de plight when dem job be los’,
‘N jus’ can’t admit all da hurt dat cost.
De Swimp Mon act like ‘e got no pash’un
What dese bad time tuh de common folk fash’un.

De Swimp Mon ‘e jus’ pontificate
Fo’ ‘e lack o’ vision tuh compensate.
It be like ‘e in self’hypnosis,
But it all boil down tuh ‘e own psychosis.

‘E gwine stomp ‘e foot ‘n pitch da fit,
If ‘e don’ hab what ‘e wanna git.
‘E like de kid ‘n de candy sto’
‘Cause nebbuh be one tuh tell um no!

Dat City Council be de cruelest joke,
‘Cause ‘e ful’ um wit’ dem spineless folk.
‘E buy dem each fuh de fewest quarter,
‘N dey tink de Swimp Mon jus’ walk on wat’ta.

Chaas’ton need anudduh, wit’ mo’ insight
Fuh de common folk in dis awful plight.
It be no time fo’ mo’ Swimp Mon dreamin’
Tuh be funded by ‘e tricky schemin’.

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