[second edition, published with notes]
No, I'm not going to apologize like other bloggers for any decrease in posts now that the school year is on. They may decrease, or not, and when they appear, you will read them, or not. As an old vulcan once promised, the universe will unfold as it should.
Still, the spice must flow, so here is something to help you enjoy the desert: "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Poet". The "Wasteland", one of my favorite assignments in college, is cryptic poetry. Harry Potter is popular prose. Put together they present an excellent parody (this from a connaisseur of parodies).
Now the warning: "The Wasteland" is the literary gnostic's Valhalla. The more literary works you've conquered, famous and obscure, from lands far and near, the more you get to drink of the sweet mead of poetry when you get here. To understand, you just have to know. There are so many allusions even Elliott felt it necessary to provide notes. And if these were necessary for critics in 1922, much more did mere undergrads require to understand and appreciate it 76 years later.
Anyway the same goes for the parody. With respect to its content, the more Harry Potter you know the more you'll "get" it and enjoy it. But there's even more to enjoy if you know the original enough to follow how "Half-Blood Poet" imitates its form. If you had the torturous experience of slogging through "The Wasteland" but never really got it, I'm sorry you got shortchanged of its richness. For you, this parody may feel like a stolen cup from the sleeping dragon of your memory, but consider this a free invitation to go back and try Elliott again. It really is worth it.
(It's not a cup, it's a bribe.)
Works Not Quite Cited:
Star Trek VI
A Man for all Seasons