Wednesday, November 21, 2007

TElephone EXchange NAmes in poetry

Ron Padgett understands the dowdy world:

It was an act of kindness
on the part of the person who placed both numbers
    and letters
on the dial of the phone so we could call WAverly,
ATwater, CAnareggio, BLenheim, and MAdison,
DUnbar, and OCean, little worlds in themselves
we drift into as we dial, and an act of cruelty
to change everything into numbers only, not just
    phone numbers
that get longer and longer, but statistical analysis,
cost averaging, collateral damage, death by peanut,
inflation rates, personal identification numbers,
    access codes,
and the whole raving Raft of the Medusa
that drives out any thought of pleasantness
until you dial 1-800-MATTRES

From "The Absolutely Huge and Incredible Injustice in the World," in How to Be Perfect (Minneapolis: Coffee House Press, 2007)

Related reading
The Raft of the Medusa (Wikipedia)

Related posts
Telephone exchange names
More telephone exchange name nostalgia
Telephone exchange names in classical music
Telephone exchange names on screen
Telephone exchange names on screen (no. 2)

All "dowdy world" posts (Pinboard)

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