Two-minute Tosca

Everything you’ve NEVER wanted to know about Puccini’s sordid tale of intrigue, lust and murder. In verse. Take that, you shabby little shocker. Shame on you.

Cavaradossi was quite at a loss, he
loved Tosca who thought he’d betrayed her.
She found he’d been painting a blonde, blue-eyed bimbo,
and wrongly assumed that he’d laid her.

“She’s just my friend’s sister,” he said as he kissed her.
“You thought she was my piece of totty?
She’s part of my plan to assist the poor man.
He’s a prisoner called Angelotti.
Though feeble and frail, he’s escaped from his jail,
where I fear that his life has been hell.
His future’s not bright – when he gets here tonight
I’ll be sending him straight down a well.”

The chief of police, (a malevolent beast)
Baron Scarpia was hot in pursuit.
He knew that the painter had aided the jailbird
with clothes and a basket of fruit.
This evil lothario hated young Mario
for daring to dally with with Floria,
but mostly he hated his rival because of
his penchant for shouting, “Vittoria!”

The painter was captured and Scarpia, enraptured,
decamped to Palazzo Farnese.
A plot he’d contrived, and when Tosca arrived
it all started to get rather crazy.
She wept as she claimed that her beau had been framed.
Alas, Scarpia wouldn’t believe her.
First he had Mario horribly tortured,
and then tried to roger the diva.

Spying a knife, Tosca fought for her life,
and things came to a tragic conclusion.
As prayers weren’t succeeding she left Scarpia needing
an eight-and-a-half-pint transfusion.

Up on the Castel Sant’ Angelo’s roof,
the painter cried, “What’s with the whining?
That boy and his sheep are disturbing my sleep ….
Blimey, look at the stars brightly shining!.”

Then Tosca came running, “I’ve news oh so stunning!
You’re safe, you’ll escape retribution.
Scarpia’s last deed before I made him bleed
Was to order a fake execution..
Now here’s what’s required: when rifles are fired
you have to be oh so persuasive.
Just fall to the ground, and do not make a sound.
I’m assured that this won’t be invasive.”

There seemed nothing odd with the firing squad
as they solemnly stood to attention.
They aimed and they fired….. Oopsy!…. Mario expired,
which, of course, had been Scarpia’s intention.
“They should have been blank!” Tosca wailed as she sank
to her knees in complete desperation
“I’m sorry my dear,” said the head fusilier.
“We weren’t party to that information.”

Howling with grief, Tosca gritted her teeth
as she leaped from the top of the tower.
Eternity beckoned, but she hadn’t reckoned
on Scarpia’s posthumous power.
For down on the ground, a large mattress she found,
(his revenge for his merciless trouncing)
she knew she was doomed, as the awful truth loomed,
to an hour of posture-sprung bouncing.

Steve Silverman

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