Apr/May 2003 Poetry

Two Poems

by Kathryn Koromilas


On The Desire To Be Famous

Because I've not been written about in history,
I'll do these things. Because no one knows my name,
no one knows all the things to be envied in me.
Because I want to be bloody filthy famous,
I'm off to cash in on my fifteen minutes—
and it's rush hour at the Warhol.

I could turn into a can, shoot a Warhol
work of art in the head just to make history.
I'm alert for any microphone-plugged fifteen
seconds. Spark a public probe into my name—
commit petty crime, use mug shot when I'm famous.
Then my FAQ will tell everything about me.

I'll compose an urban myth about myself—
all innuendo and quirky incident. Warhol
will be sorry he never met me. I'll go to school for famous
people, manipulate air waves with my tragic history
(invented, of course), then spread my legs and my name
on a glossy and get men to vote my breasts in the Top 15.

I'll sleep my way around the tube, impress in fifteen
or less, set TV on fire, make everyone want to fuck me,
cook 5-minute soups on morning shows. Sign my name
in fifty languages (bet Andrew Bloody Warhol
couldn't). I've read Wittgenstein! Know his story,
like my genital organs. People with less are famous.

I'll star in my own tabloid, talk show, be famous
in my own bedroom, just one of my fifteen
technical tricks. I'll write my own version of history;
be so famous that even I'll be curious about me.
I'll plug my house into my plotless life (so Warhol!),
smash the wall, window onto street and drop my surname.

People will instantly know me by one name—
something in an obscure tongue that I'll make famous.
Google'll find more of me than the half million "Warhol"s
clogging the cyber fame-way. I'm scrawling "I'm famous" fifteen
thousand times, ritual-style, so some god hears me
and writes my goddamned name in history.

Write my name in history! I'll become famous.
I'll trip off the tongues of consumers so fifteen
and fifty year olds alike buy me like they buy Warhol.


Street Angst

A streetlight flicks indecision
onto darkening suburbia; lacks
the dogmatic disposition prerequisite
to shining valiantly, without doubts

and asinine questions. I pause, face up,
witness a philosopher's transformation—
first the short, spasmodic breaths
that punctuate each flicker;

crossing off the could be's and what if's
and then, with a final heave
of light, it relieves doubt and settles
into another long evening.


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