Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Because Maureen asked for really bad angst-ridden poetry

I've decided I would make one rippingly good homosexual. I'm obsessed with my body; I cook like there's no tomorrow; I cry at the end of every episode of Dead Like Me; I think Winona Ryder is hot. (Wait. No. That would make me a lesbian.) My high school girlfriend once called me 'one of the girls' and, now that I think about it, she's never taken it back. There's just that one picky little detail. You know, the one about having sex with men. Like, eeee-ew. Is that strictly necessary? Anyway, for Maureen, I've posted a poem today. Read it and see if you don't agree that I am a total bitch. Here's the set-up: Third year of med school: that's when it starts to get tough. You take call with the big boys and girls; you're actually expected to do some thinking on your own; the hours are long and you're beginning to wonder if maybe, just maybe, this isn't all a big mistake. Unfortunately, you get used to it, and learn to ignore that inner voice. Bad turned to worse when our med school newspaper began running whiffy poetry written by a sensitive, angst-riddled soul* who regularly opened a vein for our benefit. His metier: the cryptic rhyme scheme, the mangled metaphor, the trite simile, the archaic contraction. His chief gripe: not being able to spend enough quality time with his loved ones. Perhaps I should have been more sympathetic. Instead, I decided to shut him down. I was a Teenage Angstwolf Mistah Donahue -- he dead. Oh faithful collie at my feet Do not ask me why I weep For I might tell you, and you must sleep; Sometimes it hurts to feel so deep. Spring is the cruellest month, sigh; Winds whisper the throbbing question, why The swollen hopes of huddled masses, Hardened hearts, and real tough classes. In a dream, I asked the Deity why She told me "Everything I tell you is a lie Including this." Her saffron robes were the color Of Existential Panic. A toast to my colleagues, Sturm und Drang, Angst and Ennui, that noble gang Though only geists, their spirits sang, They never forgot for whom the tolled bell rang. (Bonus points if you can name the kid.) Post script: my poem worked. Mr. Sensitive's Rod McKuen-aspirin' days were over.
Next up on the book review list: an oldie but (if the first two chapters are any indication) a goodie. Hint: Nebula Award Winner; chief influences, Carlos Castaneda & Joseph Conrad. Pat, no fair guessing, since you recommended this one to me.
*I forget his name, but he's undoubtedly one of those HMO docs who is on the phone all day telling other docs how to practice shitty medicine, then goes home and whines to his family about how rough his life is.


Blogger amanda m. said...

yeah, or he's running AIG...

Thanks for all the comments.
Now. how do I write the letter?

6/01/2005 09:40:00 PM  
Blogger mm said...

I bet it's a great poem. I wish I could read that teeny tiny font on this little laptop.

6/02/2005 02:55:00 AM  
Blogger Jona said...

I think the kids name was Timmy, and the actor playing him was a very young Roddy McDowall.

Do I get the *bonus* points?

6/02/2005 05:47:00 AM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

You get the bonus points, Deb.

Maureen -- you really can't read it? I'll email it to you.

6/02/2005 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger Pat said...

That's, uh, angsty, all right. I liked the sense of you almost pilfering from other poets, but not quite...

6/02/2005 09:14:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Almost? Almost? Don't you think T. S. Eliot and John Donne are turning in their graves?

I flatter myself. Fake bad poetry can never be as heinous as the real thing.

6/02/2005 10:13:00 PM  

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