That Bratt-I-Am, That Bratt-I-Am, I Do Not Like That Bratt-I-Am

Red Docs, Blue Docs . . .

In the far-away land of Mar-A-Lago
sits a once-vaunted leader, now brought very low.
His voice, once ubiquitous, lordly, and loud
has become but a whimper, no longer so proud.
The cameras have vanished, the crowds have all shrunk,
as he scrambles for donors, this fallen-down punk.

And then come his lawyers, with news of a guest,
A visit un-looked for, unwelcome, unblessed.

“That Bratt-I-Am, that Bratt-I-Am,
I do not like that Bratt-I-Am.”

“You must return those stolen docs.
You must return them, yes, every box.”

“I do not have a box of docs,
and they are mine, you lying fox.”

But then they came and then they found
docs aplenty, all around . . .

One doc, two docs
red docs, blue docs
Docs with pictures from on high
Docs with covers, docs with stamps,
Docs in files marked “terror camps”
Docs from spies and docs from techs
Docs ’bout planes on navy decks
Docs on armies, docs on friends
Docs on missiles, docs on end!

“I do not like you, Bratt-I-Am!
I do not like your little scam.
You only fight ’cause I am so strong!
You only fight ’cause Biden is wrong!
Besides, I don’t have the docs that you seek
or, if I do, they’re mine, free to keep!”

A pause, then that voice so quietly speaks
pricking his bubble; his vanity leaks.

“There’s only one president, you see,
and you are not it, quite obviously.
You’ve filed lots of lawsuits and lost every one
and Biden, not you, is the one who has won.

“The law is quite clear: these docs are ours.
You have no magic pixie dust powers.
You cannot claim them, nor take them home;
they belong to us, not you alone.
You must return those stolen docs.
You must return them, yes, every box.

“These classified docs are not like cheap porn
They’re stuff you can’t look at outside of a SCIF.
There are but a few even granted a sniff.
They should be under watch, behind guarded doors,
not left in a closet or stashed into drawers.
They must be sent back, each one of these docs
They must be returned, yes, every last box.

“We’ll come to you, or you to us.
You can return them on a bus.
You can return them on a train.
You can return them on a plane.
You can return them at your house.
You can return them with a mouse.
You must return those stolen docs.
You must return them, yes, every box.”

“But I *want* them, because they are mine!
and you cannot have them – don’t cross that line!”

“Have you read this warrant, here?
Do you not see? Is it not clear?
The judge agrees – you have no choice.
You must comply, so please, no more noise.
You must return those stolen docs
You must return them, yes, every box.”

“That Bratt-I-Am, that Bratt-I-Am,
I do not like that Bratt-I-Am!”

“Boxes of documents, boxes of pics,
Boxes of letters – be sure there’re no tricks!
We’ll carefully pack them and give you a list
(It *will* be redacted, but we’ll give you the gist)
We’ll guard them as well as the law says we must.
We’ll guard them much better than you have, we trust.

“For crimes have been crimed, as we have deducted:
espionage, theft, and justice obstructed.
The proof, we believe, will emerge box by box
from rooms where you’ve kept them without any locks.
The charges will follow, and names will be named
and soon the guilty in court will be blamed.

“Justice is coming,” says Bratt-I-Am,
and that once-vaunted leader can only say . . .

98 replies
  1. Coffae says:

    You should talk to the successors of Dr. Seuss about making a book. I have a feeling this would be a best-seller, especially if/when an indictment is made.

  2. earlofhuntingdon says:


    Too long for the Donald, and no pictures, but the Seussian rhymes will haunt him, preferably in the pokey, when he can’t remember anything else but that he wants another hamburger.

    • Yargelsnogger says:

      Does an ex-President still receive Secret Service protection in prison? Would SS officers have to join him in the pokey (in shifts, of course) for that, or would prison guards be “deputized” ? I hope we get to the point where we need to solve that conundrum. It will be an interesting debate, for sure!.

  3. oldoilfieldhand says:

    Iambic Perfection…
    Not so easy to do.
    It’s poignant and pithy
    And a bonus, it’s true!

    • Peterr says:

      When angry, he painted the White House in ketchup,
      and today his anger shows no sign it will let up.

      • notjonathon says:

        Well, there is “fetch up,” or even (as might be appropriate in this case) “retch up.”

        Though every page was covered in ketchup
        Agents still told him the documents to fetch up

        Besmeared were the pages with mustard and ketchup
        The stench of the berders made our man retch up

        • Tom-1812 says:

          Funny, but when my kids were small they pronounced ketchup as “checkup”, breakfast was “breafkast”, and Tim Horton’s was “Tim Hornet’s”.

  4. MB says:

    When I read the rhyming of “cheap porn” with “NOFORN”, it reminded me of the (supposed) “pee tape”.

    No foreign nationals, indeed!

    • Peterr says:

      When we’re talking a place called Mar-A-Lago, it’s hard *not* to think in Seussian terms. At least for me.

  5. Elizabeth Hanson says:

    This is a reason to live! The only thing that could make it more exquisite would be illustrations.

  6. russell penner says:

    With wit that is sharp
    With style that’s so clear
    Like music well played
    Falling on mine ear

    The only thing sweeter
    What would bring me cheer
    Is news he’s convicted
    By this time next year…

  7. holdingsteady says:

    Thank you Peterr! I’m on a roll, thanks for giving me a second reason to laugh and be happy this hour,

    the first being Mary Peltola beat Sarah Palin in our special election here in Alaska, so we won’t be sending a crazy person to congress, in fact we’ll be sending a very fine person!

    Ranked choice voting is working it seems :)))))))

    • Peterr says:

      Rep Sharice Davids (D KS-03 and member of the Ho-Chunk Nation [Winnebago]) will no doubt welcome having another indigenous woman in the House.

      The other 49 states in the US, and especially the people of DC, thank the people of Alaska for not inflicting Sarah Palin on the Congress.

      • MB says:

        For now – as this was a special election. Same candidates will be running again this November. But a good sign!

        • holdingsteady says:

          That’s right, it’ll be the same 3 candidates on our ranked choice in November. As we speak, Sarah is trying to bully Nick Begich into dropping out, since it’s his voters who wouldn’t rank her 2nd for the win… and she is attacking the ranked choice system that was voted in as a ballot measure.

          For the moment, I’m going to bask in a rare uplifting moment.

      • holdingsteady says:

        For the moment, I will say ‘you are welcome’ and feel proud. This is historic for us, yippee!
        This is a short term appointment until the general election, so fingers-crossed it holds.

        Thanks for the Seuss, I was going to ask for the Lorax, but realized it’s a medley that might already have my favorite. … I’ll have to pull out the old books from ‘archival’ in kids’ closet:)) to do a close read, well done and much appreciated!

        • Peterr says:

          Look for Green Eggs and Ham, and also One Fish, Two Fish as the two biggest influences here, as well as some underlying hints of Yertle the Turtle.

          And at this point in the election season, *everyone* in the House has a short-term appointment. Be thankful that you have a representative again, after going without for so long after Don Young’s death. Reps of either party know that constituent services matter (“I’m having trouble getting my VA benefits . . .”) and not having a representative hurts. [I’ve been without a state rep for almost two years, as the former one resigned in disgrace two weeks after the last election. Grrrrr. . . ]

          • holdingsteady says:

            Yes, even with Don Young as my rep I called his office from time to time, mostly about the abysmal road conditions on the ‘highways’ here in winter so nothing too serious, we deal with that (when young drivers began doing the trips it was scary). Don Young’s office stayed open for most of the time since he passed away, only recently closed I believe so hopefully people still were able to find representation.

            I feel I should know who your absent congressperson is, and why does it go unfilled? Will this election fill in that gap? Thanks again for the awesome Seuss rendering.

            • Peterr says:

              State rep, not member of Congress, so no reason you’d know him. It went unfilled because MO gives the power to call a special election to the governor, and our governor does nothing for metro area districts with large numbers of Democratic voters, even in this case where it was a Republican rep who resigned. “Special elections cost too much money!”

              Thankfully, yes, this election will fill the position. With redistricting, it’s a crap shoot as to whether the GOP or Dem will take the seat.

    • Leoghann says:

      Peltola’s victory was some really good news in a personal bad news day. I know we’re all **shocked** to hear that Sarah’s being a very sore loser.

      • holdingsteady says:

        Thanks for joining in the good news, it’s good to have something to celebrate for a change. Sorry about your bad news, best wishes.

        Real ‘Momma bears’ aren’t sore losers, haha, what a joke she is and apparently even a certain number of Alaska republicans now know it.

  8. mospeck says:

    Jesus Peter, u got like 10 lines of docs, ending with “Docs on missiles, docs on end!” God, Doctor Seuss himself come back from the dead, expect he would really like the riff .. but then he would also worry about u an expert working way too long hours and worrying way too much about rule of law and the Republic. Meanwhile Sam-I-Am other side of the world is way down in the hole and waiting for his daily thorazine. If his lawyers were even able to tell him, Alexei would thumbs up to the old guy who just passed who was also an expert in a dying field — communist party, pizza hut, to tell the truth, and all of that

  9. BeingThere says:


    Would love to hear your prose read on every evening show, for example would you be able to persuade Colbert to monologue it? (With all cerdits to Peterr)

    • Peterr says:

      I have no pull with anyone to get anyone to monologue it, but if Stephen Colbert is lurking here and wants to read it on his show, I hereby give my permission, so long as he credits “Peterr at”. [corrected]

      And given some of their intros each night, I am confident in saying that the staff of The Late Show could probably come up with some great illustrations!

  10. Pegleg55 says:

    Lots can Suess for a paragraph or two
    but few can go longer
    And still ring true.

    I was in my forties when I first read Suess and that’s the best I can come up with. Fucking funny!

  11. hollywood says:

    If Trump had any balls, he’d say screw the special master. Indict me if you have the guts. I am ready for trial right now. Bring it on. But of course….

  12. Cosmo Le Cat says:

    Emptywheel is the best site. Best comments too.

    Agreed that criminal charges related to the espionage act and the classification of docs could be problematic and further compromise national security. While I would like to see him charged with 99 crimes, perhaps a simple case can be built around theft of government property and obstruction.
    (1) the evidence has aligned with obstruction;
    (2) it’s not complicated for a jury; and
    (3) the 20 year max sentence is twice that of violating the espionage act.

  13. Dutch Louis says:

    Shortly before sunrise on the other side of the globe I opened my eyes, then my laptop, saw this, read this and it made my day right away.

  14. Yorkville Kangaroo says:

    Reminds me of the scene in ‘Hudson Hawk’ where the three CIA agents are sitting on a stake out. Two are agents proper and one is just a muscle-dufus type.

    At one point the muscle gets annoying to the two agents in the front and they tell him to go back to reading his CIA manual which he proceeds to do…aloud.

    “My name is Sam,
    I’m Sam I Am,
    I do not like
    Green Eggs and ham.”

    Most hilarious part of a VERY odd movie. If you can stomach it long enough watch that bit!

    *tip for people who have watched it and found it incomprehensibly stupid – don’t try to follow the plot…at all. I stopped about 2/3rds of the way through and it became eminently watchable thereafter*

  15. Doctor My Eyes says:

    The rhythm is perfect,
    The rhymes truly Seussian.
    The meaning so clear,
    It could convince a Venusian.

  16. DrAwkward says:

    Every Fed takes great care that our spies don’t get shot….
    But the Trump, in his club, Mar-a-Lago, does NOT!

  17. RacerX says:

    A Peterr, it seems, is a poet of sorts
    Who turns Seussian verses to snarky retorts
    Oh, woe to the Donald and all his ratf*ckers
    As fear grips their hearts and tightens their puckers!

    Thanks for the well-(re)wrought verse, Peterr—it’s a satirical masterpiece that reminds me of the glory days of MAD Magazine!

    • Ginevra diBenci says:

      I taught myself to read with my parents’ hidden (they thought) stash of Mad Magazines that dated back to the early 1950s. Can still quote the lines that ran along the sides of cartoons like Spy vs. Spy. First Dr. Seuss: To Think That I Saw It on Barthalamew Street, which is now opus non grata but we loved it as kids.

      Peterr, I just had my second abscessed tooth removed in a few weeks (this one a nasty, bone-infected surprise). I’m nursing my wounds, but you still made me laugh, so thank you for turning a painful day a little brighter.

        • Spencer Dawkins says:

          Right, Ginevra diBenci is likely conflating ” And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street” with “The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins”, a Seuss book with its own charm.

          I also remember more Seuss books than I can think of at one time, including three of the now-retired titles. “On Beyond Zebra”, in particular, was a special gift for a child growing up during the 1960s. What I took away from that, was a view of a world with no limits.

  18. BrokenPromises says:

    Par Excellence.

    The stanza with rhyming mouse and house brought to mind this line for me:
    You must return them you louse.

  19. Mipiti3 says:

    Bravo, Peterr! After all the heavy duty reading of late here, this was a joyous thing to behold. Note: before you send it to the printers, there are 2 typos to correct:
    In the 5th section from the bottom, the 1st line should be: Have you read this warrant, here? (Not: “your read”), and in the 3rd section from the bottom, the 4th line should be: … but we’ll give you the gist (not “jist”, unless that’s a Seussian word). And perhaps make sure quotation marks close each section of remarks (not just open them). This is a very worthy piece and I do hope you get it heard, performed, broadcast, published, and applauded even more. Thanks again.

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