Poe to You
Why do birds tap upon my door
And declare “Nevermore”?
Just like me, they long to read
Poe to you.
Why do bells never seem to cease?
I can’t get any peace.
Just like me, they want to read
Poe to you.
In the cellar there’s a cask
Of aged amontillado; I
Invited you to come and have a drink,
Then I bricked you up inside the wall
and then installed a toilet and a sink.
Aaah, aaaaaah, poe to you,
Aaaaaaah, Aaaaaaaaaaaaaah! poe to you.
Now your heart beats beneath the floor—
I can hear through the boards.
Just like me, it longs to read
Poe to you.
Poe to you.
Yeah, we may be kind of political for the next couple of weeks.
CHRIS WALLACE: You will meet two men. One always lies. One sort of tells the truth. I can’t tell you which is which because I work for Fox.
KRISTEN WELKER: [to Wallace] I got this. [to candidates]: Who would your opponent tell me to vote for?
BOTH CANDIDATES: Donald Trump.
WALLACE: I told you they were inscrutable.
WELKER: [serious side-eye]
TRUMP [internal monologue]: Nailed it!
MEMORANDUM FROM THE COMMISSION ON PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE DRINKING GAMES
In light of recent events, the Commission on Presidential Debate Drinking Games (CPDDG) has made adjustments to the rules for the final Debate Drinking Game of 2020.
In the interest of public health and safety, we no longer recommend drinking every time Vice President Biden rambles or begins a sentence with “Here’s the deal,” as this can result in alcohol poisoning or liver toxicity. Likewise, to avoid severe liver toxicity, we do not recommend that players drink each time the President
- Insults his opponent
- Lies again
For a more balanced drinking game, CPDDG recommends drinking if:
- An insect lands on either participant
- The moderator needs to use a taser or air horn
- Trump interrupts so loudly you can hear it through Biden’s microphone
- You want to cheer Biden on for saying something that would ordinarily cross a line
We consider it reasonable to drain your glass if
- Biden loses his cool
- Either candidate says something comprehensible and concise
- Trump tells the truth
You may also drain your glass if Trump
- Doesn’t show up (you might as well, since you bothered to pour it)
- Shows up but refuses a COVID test
- Shows up at all (we consider it inhumane to expect anyone to listen to him while sober)
Also, in light of recent videos that have surfaced online, the CPDDG recommends replacing the canceled debate with a dance-off between President Trump and Senator Harris. This will make possible a multi-day drinking game. In the days following the dance-off, we propose that you drink
- Whenever Trump or his surrogates insist, against evidence, that the President won the dance-off
- Whenever Trump or his surrogates claim it was unfair because Senator Harris had a “natural advantage”
You may drain your glass when these surrogates try to walk back the “natural advantage” claim, and insist that it didn’t mean what it sounds like.
Quote is from First Light by Charles Baxter
COUNSELOR: Literary Fiction Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
BAXTER: Every man wants to climb onto the roof of his house. It makes him feel like a homeowner and a desperado, a perfect and impossible combination.
COUNSELOR: Have you tried wearing a mask to the hardware store?
Happy Indigenous Peoples Day from the Poetry Crisis Line
ROSIE (Counselor): Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
KARENNE WOOD (Caller): The time has come for the nation to turn a new page by righting wrongs of the past.
ROSIE: Soon I hope. And good for you, if you’re voting early.
Adapted from “Apologies” by Karenne Wood
from “The Burning of Paper Instead of Children” by Adrienne Rich
JERRY (counselor): Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
ADRIENNE RICH (caller): This is the oppressor’s language.
JERRY: Would you like me to see if we have a translator on call?
RICH: Yet I need it to talk to you.
JERRY: You don’t have to talk to me specifically. Is there a language you’d prefer?
Happy 84th birthday to the late Vaclav Havel.
From “It Is I Who Must Begin”
NEF (COUNSELOR): Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
VACLAV HAVEL: Whether all is really lost or not depends entirely on whether or not I am lost.
NEF: It’s good to take responsibility, but please don’t go it alone. Let other people do some of the work.
Why, I wonder, do you reckon that this bird would come here pecking?
What strange sound incited her to pick the henhouse lock?
Did she cross for country, hip-hop, bluegrass, jazz, or rock?
Quoth the chicken: “Bach.”
May her memory be a blessing.
ALLEN GINSBERG: And tho’ I am the King of May
RUTH BADER GINSBURG: Dissent speaks to a future age. It is not simply
GINSBERG: The Marxists have beat me upon the street / kept me up all night in police station
GINSBURG: to say “My colleagues are wrong, and I would do it this way,”
GINSBERG: Followed me through springtime Prague, / detained me in secret and deported me from our kingdom by airplane.
GINSBURG: But the great dissents do become court opinions.
GINSBERG: Thus I have written this poem on a jet seat in mid heaven.
Q: Why did the chicken cross the road?
I saw you on the other side
And crossed the road—it wasn’t wide,
But I’d’ve crossed a 6-lane highway to ya.
Happy birthday to Leonard Cohen, who would have been 86 today.