Day One: ‘Let’s Go Driving’

April 1, 2015

Note: April is here again, and so is another (ambitious) poem-a-day project on this blog to help celebrate National Poetry Month. Check back daily for updates.

Oh how the buzzing sphere of screens blinks still
awake at 3 am, parsing through television’s
forgotten moments, or only forgotten-until-
ranked moments. Men in skinny ties, beige suits
and overpaid haircuts pitching juice ads.
Friends who’d rather tear out each other’s esophagi.
Observational bleakness in the potsmoke Clinton
heyday. Fizzy like soda cans in coolers at a grad party.
Choose your next conquest, or the algorithm
selects it for you, burning with the countdown
blaze of prime-time basketball shot clocks.
This is our new delusion — know it well,
like the alcoholic cases your older brother bought
you to be the hero of suburban parties, only newer.
Sleeker. More modern. More isolated.
You’re your own champion in this great flux
of internet and streaming and connectivity.
A goddamn shame, really, the beers you drink
as snacks alongside sitcom bravery,
3:10 now and let’s go driving, he thinks.
Buckle into bed instead. You’ll thank
yourself as sun crowbars open the blinds
and slaps warm morning in your face. Reward
for snowy escapism into pixels
that once howled Hollywood’s demure ambition.
Now, it’s all cigars and wooden floors,
a bedroom for you, by you, only you know.


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