Ozymandias calls the Poetry Crisis Line as William Carlos Williams eats a tire.

WILLIAM CARLOS WILLIAMS (counselor): Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
OZYMANDIAS (caller): Look on my works, ye mighty , and DESPAIR!
WILLIAMS: I have eaten de spare that was in the icebox.

Any resemblance between Ozymandias and actual arrogant despots approaching irrelevancy is purely intentional.

Percy Bysshe Shelley calls the Poetry Crisis Line

STAFFER: Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?

CALLER: I met a traveller

STAFFER: Are you calling on his or her behalf? Did the traveler cause the problem?

CALLER: from an

COUNSELOR: Is this an unrequited love sort of call?

CALLER: antique land,

STAFFER: Is that the used furniture store on Route 10?

CALLER: Who said—“Two vast and trunkless legs of stone / Stand in the desert. . . .

STAFFER: I don’t know. Was it Led Zeppelin? It sounds like something they might say.

CALLER: Near them,

STAFFER: Pink Floyd?

CALLER: on the sand,

STAFFER: The Beach Boys?

CALLER: Half sunk

STAFFER: Was it from Yellow Submarine?

CALLER: a shattered visage

STAFFER: Lyle Lovett?

CALLER: lies,

STAFFER: No, I’m doing my best here.

CALLER: whose frown,

STAFFER: I don’t know whose frown. Could you give me a hint?

CALLER: And wrinkled lip,

STAFFER: Billy Idol?

CALLER: and sneer of cold command,

STAFFER: David Bowie!

CALLER: Tell that its sculptor well those passions read

STAFFER: [sings] “And in the cracks along the sidewalk…” Was it that song Elton John wrote after John Lennon died?

CALLER: Which yet survive,

STAFFER: Paul McCartney? Ringo?

CALLER: stamped on these lifeless things,

STAFFER: Dead Can Dance?

CALLER: The hand that mocked them,

STAFFER: Weird Al?

CALLER: and the heart that fed;

STAFFER: Wait–is that ACDC?

CALLER: And on the pedestal,

STAFFER: Anne Murray?

CALLER: these words appear:

STAFFER: Another quote? But I haven’t figured out the first one!

CALLER: My name is Ozymandias,

STAFFER: Oh, that’s easy–Alan Moore. “Who watches the watchmen?”

CALLER: King of Kings;

STAFFER: Isn’t that who the watchmen would watch when they’re watching the Watchmaker? Um, I mean Handel’s Messiah.

CALLER: Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!

STAFFER: I think that’s Galadriel the Elf Queen from Lord of the Rings. Did you just call me to ask about quotes?

CALLER: Nothing beside remains.

STAFFER: Glad to be of help, then. Where are you calling from?

CALLER: Round the decay / Of that colossal Wreck,

STAFFER: What? You should’ve said something! Do you want me to send a fire truck? Are you OK?

CALLER: boundless and bare

STAFFER: Do you need me to send clothes?

CALLER: The lone and level sands stretch far away.”

STAFFER: Uh…do you need me to send a camel?



Read the original here:  https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/46565/ozymandias

Any poems or poets you want to see on the Poetry Crisis Line? Leave a suggestion in the comments