Sympathy for Sisyphus

Sisyphus is the original
     Rolling Stone.
Whatever unholy music he enjoyed
during his rule of
   ancient Corinth,
the gods have left him
     only rock and roll.
I can’t help but imagine
   him—in Tartarus—
listening to
   “Sympathy for the Devil,”
over and over,
     tapping his hands on the
stone’s soiled curve to
   keep time
     with Rocky Dijon on
   congas or hooting
when the backing vocalists
     sing woo woo.
I’m sure Hades would
   put on Led Zeppelin
or Pink Floyd if
   Sisyphus asked, but there’s
something about
     Mick Jagger’s voice—
the voice of the
   corrupted preacher—
Sisyphus likes,
that speaks to him on some
     preternatural level.
You sure you don’t
   want Charlie Parker?
     Hades asks.
No thank you,
   Sisyphus replies,
as Keith Richards starts
     to rock out right
around the three-minute mark.
   I love this part.
Hades sighs and gives up
   for the umpteenth time,
plugging his ears when
     Sisyphus starts
   singing falsetto along with
Mick: What’s my name?
     And the stone rolls
back to the bottom
   of the hill.


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