John Berryman calls the Poetry Crisis Line

STAFFER: Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
CALLER: Life, friends, is boring.
STAFFER: Excuse me?
CALLER: We must not say so.
STAFFER: No, it’s OK. Whatever’s on your mind, you can tell me.
CALLER: After all, the sky flashes, the great sea yearns.
STAFFER: Were you caught in a storm?
CALLER: we ourselves flash and yearn,
STAFFER: So it’s a metaphorical storm? That’s OK. We handle a lot of metaphorical problems.
CALLER: and moreover my mother told me as a boy
STAFFER: We get a lot of those calls too.
CALLER: (repeatingly)
STAFFER: Like you wouldn’t believe.
CALLER: Ever to confess you’re bored–
STAFFER: I didn’t say that, I just–
CALLER:  –means you have no / Inner Resources.
STAFFER: We are short-staffed at the moment, but–
CALLER: I conclude now I have no inner resources–
STAFFER: You may be stronger than you think.
CALLER:–because I am heavy bored.
STAFFER: Wait–you called the Crisis Line because you’re bored?
CALLER: Peoples bore me.
STAFFER: Have you tried a good book?
CALLER: Literature bores me.
STAFFER: All of it?
CALLER: –especially great literature.
STAFFER: Ah yes, Bukowski once wrote about–
CALLER: Henry bores me, with his plights and gripes.
STAFFER: Right, no Bukowski.
CALLER: As bad as achilles.
STAFFER: No Virgil either…
CALLER: who loves people and valiant art, which bores me.
STAFFER: Have you tried going for a walk?
CALLER: And the tranquil hills–
STAFFER: Going out to a club?
CALLER: & gin
STAFFER: You don’t have to drink. You could go to a show.
CALLER: look like a drag
STAFFER: If that’s the kind of show you’re into.
CALLER: And somehow a dog.
STAFFER: I love dogs!
CALLER: has taken itself & its tail considerably away
STAFFER: You could try calling to him.
CALLER: into mountains or sea or sky
STAFFER: The ones that were flashing and yearning? Do you know the dog’s name? If not, you could just try Here puppy puppy
CALLER: Leaving behind
STAFFER: Here, puppy puppy
CALLER: Me, wag.
STAFFER: Who’s a good boy? Who’s a good boy?

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