Couch Potato Blues

by John Olson

Whenever I get the urge

To write a poem I try to talk

Myself out of it. Especially

If it involves getting off of the couch

What kind of poem would insist on being

Written down anyway, is that the kind

Of poem that you want to write

Or is that the kind of poem that the poem

Wants you to write? A little effort

Turns it into a forklift. A little more

Effort opens a door

In the brain and everything flint

Becomes an intonation, a delicious

Tornado of glands and xylophones

Buttering a slow tattoo

O blacksmith toast.  Autumn is neutral

But crawls by anyway crackling with Halloween

And its lurid meanings of death

Sparkling faster than a green shampoo

In a house of skeletons. It is ultimately

Through words that a zeitgeist gets

Into a personality and blends

With Florida. Everything else seems

Magnetized by books. The kind of opinions

Exchanged in a shopping mall

Echo like salt in a jukebox

Made of scabs. This is where the poem gets

Ugly. Lift the lever at the end of the line

And a fireball appears

To be soaked in words. Above all don't

Write anything that you don't feel

Is genuinely searching for something real

And tactile, like Mick Jagger in a bathroom

Looking for a towel. Achieve ribbed cotton

And you achieve the world. You may now

Return to the couch, and refute the laws of physics

However you please