Finally got around to the prompt from weeks ago at the always-interesting Found Poetry Review, to use the pages of the CIA's Style Manual as a source for a found poem.
I used to be a writing teacher and have read a lot of style manuals. It is depressing how horrifically boring they are. If a style manual is a good indicator of institutional culture, working at the CIA is about as interesting as reading the phone book. Which is quite likely true I suppose. It is also somewhat disconcerting (but also not surprising) that there was enough confusion about the meaning of "ironically" that it needed its own entry in the manual.
I think my favorite part of how this turned out is that the title sounds kind of like the line "Oppa Gangnam Style."That and the bullet line.
Directorate of Intelligence Style
Follow the old maxim, “When in doubt, don’t.”
Numbers used in a metaphorical sense are spelled out.
Some abbreviations are widely recognized and need no explanation.
Do not italicize foreign words that have been naturalised into English.
Bullets -- usually solid circular symbols -- are used to introduce.
The American spelling is always used.
If there is a good English translation, use it.
Use hyphens (not en dashes) in Russian submarine classes.
B.C. (before Christ; comes after the number, see A.D.)
Ironically (involves incongruity between what might be expected
and what actually occurs).
Neocolonist(s), neofascist(s) but neo-Communist, neo-Nazi.
The preferred adjective for our country is US, not American
like an apple