Power Poet

The room is dark. There’s a power point slide up. A figure steps in front of the projection, distorting the image.

Josh

I’m a poet. But I’m not your average poet. It may shock you to know that my poems don’t rhyme. Because have you ever heard a heartbeat? The beating of a human heart? Does it rhyme?

Well I guess I just proved my point.

Some have asked questions like, “Do hearts use any of the standard poetic devices?”

And then I’m like “Yes. They use repetition and meter.”

And then some people are like, “That’s getting a bit free with the idea of meter. It’s just the same beat over and over again.”

And then I’m like, “Unless the human heart has an arrhythmia.”

And they’re like, “So your model for poetry is an abnormal human heart, with an unpredictable heartbeat?”

To which I say, “Like the human heart, my poetry is constant, life-giving, and, due to a congenital defect, syncopated and surprising.”

And they’re like, ”But hearts don’t use alliteration.”

And I’m just like, “Shut up. The analogy breaks down. Like all analogies. That’s right; I just used the ideas of an ‘analogy’ as an analogy. Hope you don’t startle easily.”

But the truth is that I’m a poet because I believe that analogies DON’T break down. And that is what makes poetry powerful. We can use language to see how two objects in this fractured human reality are not fundamentally separated. We can see that they are in fact a unified whole. Like an Oreo cookie. Does the plainness of my metaphor surprise you? Does it seem common to you? Un-poetic? That I would use a product by Nabisco to talk about the wholeness and unity at the core of human experience?

It should not surprise you, as the cookie is a perfect metaphor for the unity of disparate parts. Black cookie, white cream. Hard cookie, soft cream. Race, gender, human identity itself is bound up in the heart of a cookie, and the poet shall remove the metaphor, twisting half from half, and letting the meaning at its center fly away like the pure, white dove of truth.

Caleb

I thought this was going to be a training on like what the company does so that I can get up to speed.

Josh

(cutting him off, a little too sharp)

It is!

(softer)

It is. I’m just giving you some background, so you know where I’m coming from. Go ahead and flip to page 14 and we’ll look at figure number 1. “Welcome to Mimesa.”

Caleb

Wait, so if you’re so into poetry, why are you working here?

Josh

Two reasons: It pays well. And I love Power Point.

Fade to black.

Power Poet

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