Tag Archives: William Wordsworth

#289: A Poem Composed On the Fly Using Voice-to-Text a Few Miles Above the Old Church in Wilsonville Before a Gig

I am no Wordsworth,
but I’m on the way to a gig
playing drums with Brian
and I was thinking about that poem,
you know the one,
the one he writes about how
lovely everything is around
Tintern Abbey while he’s walking
and thinking about his sister.
It’s a beautiful poem.
One of my favorites.
I’m driving to the gig down
Interstate 205, but when
I take the Stafford Road exit,
even though I’m driving,
I have some inkling of how
he must’ve felt about the land
and the trees and the sky
and his sister. This won’t be
nearly as long as Wordsworth’s poem
and not nearly as good,
but I’m running out of time
to write my fourth poem of the month
and I’m using voice-to-text in order
to write the damn thing
totally on the fly and the title came to me
seemingly out of nowhere
as I was thinking about playing
the rock music in an old church
in Wilsonville, driving down
a road I’d like to think was named
after another famous William.
Our own. I think it’s a good title.
And this is the best I could do
for a poem in the moment–
which is really all we can
ask of ourselves, ever.

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#165: Our Phones Are Too Much With Us

iphone-5s-08
This was too damn hard. Finally, I had to abandon Wordsworth’s awesome rhyme scheme because almost nothing rhymes with seven. At any rate, “The World Is Too Much With Us” is one of my all-time favorite poems and now I’ve gone and ruined it.  The poem, exactly as Wordsworth penned it, published in 1807, says as much about our cell phone addiction as my paltry offering does! I struggled with the fact that so much of the time I just wanted to leave the poem exactly as it was. The assignment today was to write a satire or parody based on a famous poem. The following is neither satire nor parody. Read the original after mine in the unlikely event that you don’t know the poem!
Unknown
Our Phones Are Too Much With Us
Our phones are too much with us; twenty-four seven,
texting and sexting, we lay waste our hours;—
Little we tweet that has any power;
We have surfed our minds away, a dead heaven!
This Sky that beckons with stars at eleven;
The friends standing next to us at all hours
Are all neglected now like weed choked flowers;
For this, our constant gaming; we are out of whack;
It moves us not. WTF! I’d rather be
A monkey climbing trees in a forest;
So might I, leaping from limb to odd limb
Feel a part of a thriving, singing chorus;
and I’d laugh at people, all distant and dim;
who from their stupid smart phones can’t divorce.
Unknown
The World Is Too Much With Us
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;—
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not. Great God! I’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.

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