A response from Nintəndo

The following is a response to Kylen’s poem/letter to Nintəndo.

Dear Kylen,

We at Nintəndo find it quite pleasing

when devoted gamers write letters.

Really, we do; I’m not teasing.

Atari calls us bananas,

but we like it a bunch,

almost as much as Mac likes

to earn a star punch.

You know that Mario was the ref in that game?

No princess in Punch-Out either.

Isn’t that a shame?

Back to your points, on side quests

we won’t dawdle.

Just know your suffering moves us

as do your death foibles.

Your many…many…many death foibles.

It’s funny you should ask

about the plumbers’ back story.

Their pipe dreams began long ago

on that glorious morning,

but that’s all I can tell you

without a DLC purchase.

To answer your question

about what substance influenced

side-scrolling action, flying turtles and goombas,

we don’t condone–wink, wink–

the consumption of fungi,

LSD, ecstasy, or marijuana.

Though there is Bud, but he’s only one guy.

Then, I suppose, there is Sue and Steve and

Amanda and Tobi from Bandai.

Now is no time to get caught up

in the who took the what

or why the walls melted

into the princess-dragon-castle plot.

That answer, I’m sure, will be found

in another spot.

As for tossing your system

out the window after your thousandth death,

I can say this:

The biggest Nintəndon’t

I’ve heard to this day:

Never, ever, ever, ever

throw your Nintəndo away.

Didn’t mother ever tell you

there are aliens on Mars

who are starving to play?

I’ll close out this letter and reveal a surprise.

Attached is a package

with Amanita muscaria spores inside.

I do have to add that

these are strictly for research

beneath a microscope.

Now, go slay that Bowser! The Princess is waiting.

Star Power for life!

Forever Yours,

Nintəndo

Line Potion #5

Wait in line at the bank

Write lines in a notebook

Between the lines of a page

Check online for an email

Outside the lines on the highway

Front line trenches of warzones

Offensive line runs a play fake

Line backers blitz the runner

Receiver bee line touchdown

Hold the line for the call

Clotheslines knock over wrestlers

Free throws at the foul line

Fast line round the racetrack

Line drives blast the outfield

Baseline alley-oop dunk

Notes line sheet music onstage

George Clinton’s bassline funk

People line dance in the night club

Cast pickup lines at the bar

y = mx + b

Carpenter chalk lines before cutting

Neon timeline on my face

Bread lines in the depression

Aluminum foil lines the pan

Kitchen line cook makes soup

Formula for a closing line.

Daily Fortune

Monday’s child watches football at night

Tuesday’s child eats tacos done right

Wednesday’s child has Pugsly for an uncle

Thursday’s child is thirsty for trouble

Fridays child likes to party and dance

Saturday’s child wants to give peace a chance

As for the child that is born on a Sunday

They won’t be delivered ’til two o’clock Monday

Southbound

Spring, spring.

Like fools we do sing?

Like Dionysus Zagreus,[i]

from the heart do we sing?

Nay, that four-chambered war drum

is too dark to let sing.

A heart like Persephone’s

six months before spring.[ii]

“The horror, the horror,”[iii]

the forlornness in spring.

The despair of Theseus

amidst a labyrinth of string[iv]

while the minotaur keeps charging,

charging…

its smart phone,

of all things.[v]


[i] Mark Morford and Robert J. Lenardon. Classical Mythology. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1999), 223-224. Hera, out of jealousy, convinces the Titans to devour the child born to Zeus and Persephone, and save the heart which is secretly returned. Zeus swallows this heart and Dionysus is reborn. Zeus then hurls a lightning bolt at the Titans, turning them to ash. Humans are said to have originated from this evil ash.

[ii] Ovid, Metamorphoses, translated by Mary M. Innes, (London, England: Penguin Group, 1955), 127-131. Persephone (Proserpine) is condemned to spend 6 months of the year, starting in Autumn, in the underworld with Hades. Logically, Persephone’s heart would be the saddest/darkest once autumn arrives, 6 months before spring.

[iii] Joseph Conrad. Heart of Darkness. (Kindle Edition, 2012). Kurtz utters this as his last earthly phrase which is rumored to represent Kurtz’s acquired disdain for and perceived meaninglessness of life. The utterance may also be viewed as a condemnation of the pure evil that lurks within the hearts of humanity.

[iv] Ovid, “The Cretan Labyrinth,” Metamorphoses. 183. Theseus uses a spool of string to mark the way to the labyrinth’s exit. Consider the frustration and confusion one might feel when trying to find the way out of a maze in which one’s line to the outside world blends together with the walls of the maze. Such a situation might leave one to feel unable to ‘pull the right strings’ – a trope that refers to being able to exert one’s influence for a beneficial gain – and make an exit.

[v] Albert Camus. The Myth of Sisyphus and other essays. Translated by Justin O’Brian. (New York, NY: Vintage Int’l, 1991), 157. Camus begins his essay “The Minotaur”: “There are no more deserts. There are no more islands. Yet there is a need for them…in order to serve [folks] better, one has to hold them at a distance for a time.” Smartphones, social media, and instant news access have given humanity the ability to, seemingly, hold one another at bay. Will this result in the betterment of humanity or an increase in social isolation and depression?

Soup Curling

“The Sea was angry that day, my friends, like an old man trying to send soup back at a deli” – George Costanza in “The Marine Biologist” episode of Seinfeld.

While George may not be the most insightful guy in the world, he does wax eloquent on occasion. Just look at the depth of this statement.

On first listen (or read through), George’s statement reels Hemingway’s Old Man and the Sea from the mind’s ocean. Perhaps this is no mistake given that George’s line comes from a story that he tells his friends – the story of how George pulled a golf ball from a whale’s blow hole.

Though, it is worth mentioning that rather than trying to land a marlin, George is lured into rescuing a beached whale because he has lied about being a marine biologist.

A second pass through this line ties the angry sea to the bowl of soup. Imagine the choppy, white-capped waves bumping into one another, stirring up foam as they stagger to the shore.

Now place that hectic scene into a red-lipped porcelain bowl situated on a chipped saucer resting on a faded, mustard-yellow counter-top. Add a wrinkled, liver spotted hand in a sweeping collision course arc that sends saucer, bowl, and soup flying across the counter, and you’ve got one hell of a scene condensed into a single statement.

Throw in a dash of Andy Warhol, and the result might be a blottered psychedelic stew. But, perhaps, that is beyond the scope of George’s statement.

– Christopher Miller

Get your Goat: What’s for Lunch?

Billy: This homework tastes really good. Where’d you get it?


Bubby: Bessie says she got it from mu.


Billy: All Bessie ever says is “mu.”


Bubby: She never claimed to be more than the average cow.


Billy: Why do I eat lunch with you every day?


Bubby: Because you don’t deviate from the norm.


Billy: Ok, no more math homework for you.


Bubby: Kiss my asymptote.


Billy: I’m approaching my threshold.


Bubby: Yeah, but by my calculations, you’ll never reach it.