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Oh, Muse! drive the war far from our city  and come to preside over our dances, if you love me; come and celebrate the nuptials of the gods, the banquets of us mortals  and the festivals of the fortunate; these are the themes that inspire thy most poetic songs. And should Carcinus come to beg thee for admission with his sons to thy chorus,  refuse all traffic with them; remember they are but gelded birds, stork-necked dancers,  mannikins about as tall as a goat's turd, in fact machine-made poets. Contrary to all expectation, the father  has at last managed to finish a piece, but he admits that a cat strangled it one fine evening.