I  Killed
My Poetry Machine
a poem by  
  keith  o'connor
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I had seen numerous adds for poetry writing software, so I decided to try a reasonably good one. I came to the conclusion that poetry machines in general produce bad poetry. There is more to writing poetry than consulting lists of words.
I Killed My Poetry Machine 

I saw the add 
for a poetry machine 
a machine to help you write poetry 
 it said 
on your personal computer 
 it said 
your personal helper 
your own little muse 
 it said 
it had a window to display my text 
buttons for me to click 
click for punctuation 
click for grammar 
I could  click click click 
for a rhyming dictionary 
with a few more clicks 
I could jump to  
a thesaurus and  
a regular dictionary 
writing poetry 
would be so easy 
be a bard one easy step 
it said 
I got the poetry machine 
I installed the poetry machine 
I was ready to write 
my first great poem 
on my new poetry machine 
clicking through lists 
of nouns and verbs 
adjectives and prepositions 
lists of rhymes and 
lists of meanings 
I selected every word 
with careful delight 
from each and every list  
down to the very last word 
then my new poem 
was finished 

I read my new poem 
it's  badly disjointed 
it's a patch work poem 
too much editing  
it has no flow 
it has no me 
no me that has dreamed 
dreamed in words 
that I see 
up on my screen 
words that talk to me 
 in groups of sounds 
and groups of shapes 
that dance as I speak 
what was this thing 
born from my poetry machine 
what ever it is 
it must die 
without hesitation 
I clicked on delete 
I killed my poetry machine 
that terrible machine 
I killed it with glee 
before it killed me 

Keith O'Connor 
Ottawa  Canada 
2001  aug  22 

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