Friday, March 19, 2010

A Coney Island of the Mind

Man, Ferlinghetti is just amazing. Fun, and visual, and clever, and silly, and shocking, and deep. He loves poems that come across like a crazy surreal circus. Here's an excerpt:

      Sailing through the straits of Demos
                           we saw symbolic birds
                                               shrieking over us
          while eager eagles hovered
                               and elephants in bathtubs
      floated past us out to sea
                                                   strumming bent mandolins
 and bailing for old glory with their ears
                                                      while patriotic maidens
         wearing paper poppies
                                                and eating bonbons
                 ran along the shores
                                                wailing after us

Oh, it's just all super fun and I never feel like he's wasting my time. And, as I sit here, typing on my Lenovo Thinkpad, I am struck by a line in "Junkman's Obbligato" that is surprising considering it was written in 1955:
The thinkpad makes homeboys of us all. 
So... I wonder what he meant? Is it a reference to the little paper "think" pads that IBM gave to all their employees? Or something else? In any case, it has become a standard greeting for me, when, say, I see someone else with a Lenovo at a coffeeshop. I just stare at them until they reluctantly make eye contact, and I say, as intensely as possible, "The thinkpad makes homeboys of us all." They usually look a little scared and edge away, but it's okay. Ferlinghetti knows what I mean.

No comments:

Post a Comment