Rome no longer delights me. The glories of the Caesars are increasingly buried
under the pasta and cheap plastic chairs.‘-Charlton Heston, March 2, 1970,
from The Actor’s Life – Journals 1956-1976

The papers say you’ll lose your mind – not fast,
but like a leper’s hands and feet. Still time
to measure why a Democrat would come
to vote for Nixon. Could be your mind went bad
back then, back in the Seventies. My father
let us stay up late to see Omega Man –
the counterculture doves gone mad, transformed,
and you, the lonely hawk, left watching Woodstock
on a movie screen. Your Roman dignity?
Just so much make-believe. ‘How could I know,’
is what you said in Soylent Green – the death
of Edward Robinson moved all of us
to tears. You really nailed that scene. Charlton,
you damned dirty ape–get your hands off of me.