Prose from Poetry Magazine

Am I Emo?

A poetry comic.

by Gary Sullivan

Gary Sullivan - Am I Emo?
Click to view Gary Sullivan's Comic

3 4 5
Originally Published: July 1, 2009

COMMENTS (8)

On July 2, 2009 at 9:27am Peter Money wrote:
R U, U R

profile in courage,
motorcycle without jack
aerowhacked by a lawn

;

planked-up, streetlamp'd,
by a dress, the eye of time-
less--is a-head (red over--& unders,)

o still the thunder:
"so much (depends [upon (the wrist-
watch. . .)]), & dred/not dread.

(7.2.09 sent with thanks to Gary for
making this improv possible on another
dam'-able rainy summer day in
Vermont [opposite end of Elsewhere, I
think, but still as wet; same stuff]. Get
on that moto'c'cle & RIDE!--& ask your
dear street what the woman feels, what
patterns may mimic her dress.
--Peter Money,
Modest pioneering poet faculty member
of The Center For Cartoon Studies,
www.cartoonstudies.org,
www.petermoneypoetry.com)

On July 7, 2009 at 12:56am troylloyd the platenpounder wrote:
inkish dipp'd well witha gritty punchlines each frame as funnies in thr own right.

collapsing gag panels thrown screwy squirrel yet still relevent inna nowtime sociocultural shindigs.

jaha! & check that control'd fluid line, smooth but loose inna casual naturalness : quality lines ain't just for poetries.

upon critical inspection, i could blunder my brainmaze about the reflective aspect of some poets being likewise teenage emo minded, mainly in the manners of indepth selfreflection or some dragged yearning for an acceptable slot of some sort of identity, maybe more quietude always moaning emotion or redemptive values about an elevated plane of high minded readership.

(hey poet, eat my prizes 'cause jobless ain't no jabberwocky)

anyway, very glad to see some wellcrafted comics gracing pages of Poetry & this beautiful sequential episode is oh so much more of the enjoyable way to read critique.

yes, i would consider it a valid critique, it's much more thanna collection of punchlines.

my ignatz brix krazy!

On July 10, 2009 at 3:09pm matt wrote:
no gary, you aren't emo, you're just really late on using the term, like 10 years late.

On July 11, 2009 at 8:27pm the archaic avatar wrote:
i'd argue against "emo" being an archaic term, to the contrary, the kids are still quibbling.

can you tell us what's neo-new-now?

are we cool enough to glimpse inside your cultural handbook of hipsterdom about like-last-week-recent youth trendz?
; )

for the sake of parody, the subject should be well-known by a broad swath of the intended audience -- otherwise there'd be no punchline because nobody would get the reference.

in march 2008, which is fairly recent, emo kids in Mexico were creating enough cultural impact to warrant an article by Time magazine:
http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1725839,00.html
Mexico's Emo-Bashing Problem

& witness the quibbling kids, a short sweep of yootoobz will yield hours of entertaining visceral studies & interactions on the topic of emo

(& youtube is a fairly useful indicator of the prevalence frequency usage of particular sociolinguistic slang jargon amongst a peer-to-peer group cluster)

fairly contemporary:

omg thank you for making this video!!! my friend is trying to be emo and me and all her friends are so annoyed by that! i caught her in class trying to cut herself with a pencil! omg, it's so retarded. then she gets mad whenever i mock her and pretend to be emo for example, i'll take my hair (because it's really dark, i didnt dye it or anything) and put it over my face then take a red pen and right on my wrist just to mock her and she's all "that's not funny" whatever

I was waiting with baited breath to see which "real emo" band you would list first, knowing full well it would be CTTS. Cool, you're heard a few modern post-hardcore / hardcore bands and you think you are a full bottle. Now why don't YOU go and do some research and listen to some REALLL emo bands like Closure, Knotwork, Rare Snail Habitat..., The Candyland Carcrash and Milkwede, you pompous maladroit embarassment.

Right. You fucking bollock talker. If you saw someone wearing skinny jeans, tight t-shirts whatever, you automatically think ''emo''. Dont try and define the meaning of the word, because no-one gives a shit, and you will never get this point across. Emo does NOT stand for ''emotional harcore'', where the fuck did you get hardcore from? It just means emotional.

Kill the Switch by Circle Takes the Square

Alesana is also emo just saying, and no matter how many times i try to explain this exact thing to ppl they don't fucking listen lol. i tell them to call it "dark scene" instead lol. i luv ur vid 5/5

Alesana is Post-Hardcore. Not Emo or Screamo and defiently not that dark crap you just made up.

wat the hell???? since when does emo mean "emotional hardcore"???if thats wat it stood for then wouldnt it be sumthin like emo hardcore?? no its just emo... meaning just emotional.... and i dont believe that being emo has anything to do with being hardcore, gothic, dressing in all black, or any of that crap... basically ppl that are emo are the least likely to tell u b/c they are too freakin emotional....were did u learn this bs?

ahm hä?
jede musikrichtung hat ihr eingenen style__punks sehn ya au anders aus wie hopper.
also kann sein das ich nich ganz blick worums hier geht___mein englisch isch ned sonderlich gut. aber s geht doch darum das ma (anscheinend) nich emo sei kann?
ich mein punks sind punks weil se punk hörn,
hopper sind hopper weil se hip hop hörn, oder?
und wenn ma emocore hört was isch ma dann wenn kein emo?

@the people talking about screamo:
the term 'screamo' originated in the time when emo became weaker, and recently became chaotic again, so people called it screamo. (the 'weaker' emo also caused all the confusion in the term emo)
Screamo is a subgenre of emo. All screamo is essentially "emo," but all emo music isn't necessarily screamo.

Recap. You canpt be emo, I´m emo, not you
I hate you, i want to be unique.
T_T

I was wondering all the time what EMO means and nobody was able to tell me exactly what it means, so far.

So EMO`s are not the small depressed, looking children I see everyday...
Very Interesting

Ok im gonna re-educate you mate, emo stands for emotional not emotional hardcore thats a subgenre of emo. People that are referred to as 'emo' are 'scene kids', but the fact is they're the same thing. Thirdly i'm going to assume that your called an emo because u listen to the music u referred to in the vid, so the reason your makin this vid is to manipulate what an emo is for your own benefit..the fact is you CAN be an emo. There is an emo fashion, music and persona get it through ur thick head.

Actually, Dumbasshole! Emo is short for emotive Hardcore.Like everything, it always gets a stereotype. That's what happens in Grand ole America!

emotional hardcore ---> emocore ---> emo
is that so complex?
or are you stupid?

Circle Takes the Square?

i know a better way to call them:
faggots =3

God some people are stupid...get a clue u retards...why don't u research what an emo is before u start typing bullshit...the person who made this vid DOES NOT know what emo is ok end of story, he is describing a sub culture of emo and portrayed them incorrectly as well
all in all this guy is wrong k

Whats even funnier is everyone gets their information from wikipedia (like this tool) and then thinks their some kind of genius on the topic...
Get your head outta ur ass u stupid bastard and do some proper research...like i said before 'emo' has been around for centuries k

How about you learn what emo is and STFU! He is talking moastly about screamo in this, but that is still emo. Screamo has been around since the 90's and emo has been around since the 80's. I wouldn't call that centuries. Rites of Spring and Fugazi are from the 80's and they started emo on accident and hate the term.

why people in yt hate wikipedia so much?

Just so you people realize it can't mean emotional because all music has emotion therefore all music is emo by what you are saying.

tottaly agree with your video. but there are some subgenres of emo. this is called ''emo violence''. there are some emo bands like this too:the mozart season,sky eats airplane,this is the hospital,akissforjersey,house vs hurricane,a chinese restaurant,the midnight life,arlington sleeps. the difference is between the sound production.

dude you have amazing taste in music...
i love
Dear Diary I Seem To Be Dead
and
We fly are kites at night

'Cut my wrist' isn't a litteral lyric, its a metaphor.

How is it a metaphor dickhead? i dont think u know what a metaphor is

Jesus Christ, get a hold of yourself man.
No need to get all defensive.
I don't need to explain anything to you, buts not in a literal sense.
If you were so fucking smart like you assume you are, you would know what it actually means

Dude, who the hell are you to tell someone if they are emo or not? actually, i think emo means EMOTIONALLY UNSTABLE, durr and tbh if someone thinks something is EMO it's their own damned opinion, heard of that? yeah, it's called FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION. so people can think they're emo if they wanna think it.

*clears throst* "Ahem, 99.9% of ppl take the term 'emo' to mean emotionally unstable person, a lifestyle, an attitude if you will, dressing in that particular way too. So regardless of what its 'technical' meaning is, it will be used differently. And hey, its not a big deal, who the fuck cares... Thats what is means now. People need their stereotypes mate, your meanong is too broad. Lets put everyone who has a long fringe and a black tshirt into one box, and call them emo. Period. shit

would the band "eyes set to kill" fall into the emotional hardcore genre?
This video fails to acknowledge that subcultures are difficult to define, and that those definitions are not finite. Yes, Emo is a type of music; however, it is also a term which is used to describe a wider body of misguided, sad, juvenile misanthropes. :P

GO KILL YOURSELF instead of writing poetry about it! GET A LIFE OR GET A DEATH!!! PREFERABLY THE LATTER!

emo got alot meaningz 8D so um ya

nope... your rong, emo kids are fuckin losers, everything they do, listen to, all emo, trust me, i make fun of and beat up all you stupid little pussy emo kids at school

shit, I was lookin for I Wrote Haikus About Cannibalism in Your Yearbook and I found that... bullshit!

much respect for emotional hardcore, but the "new wave" emo kids need to jump of a FUCKING cliff already.

u missed out tristan tzara and that is a sin! haha joking!

The first "emo" scene was in DC, but it died out quickly. It moved to San Diego for a while, but it was a different kind of music. Later on you had the sweater-wearing types who people called "emo" but they never actually took the name for themselves. The acoustic folk-rock turned emo for a time because of Dashboard.

stfu! emo means emotive and emotional! u haters dont even know what it really means! labels are for soupcans. emos are just like everybody else(except we look hotter)

Yeah, you look intelligent. You say labels are for soupcans, but you refer to people that look that way as "emo" You can't escape the use of labels, it's in human nature to give things categories. That's where words like "retarded" and "gay" come in. If a situation is not appealing, it is called retarded or gay. Isn't that insulting to real retards and gays? In earlier days, we inulted/isolated them, now it carries into our modern language. Immoral? Involuntary? Ignorant.

Calling someone "gay" as a sleight isn't apart of the aesthetic of the original post-punk, post-hardcore DIY community. In fact, they eschewed such language and looked to be inclusive of queer identity in punk rock. Bands like Frail, Native Nod, Honeywell, Fingerprint, etc., wrote songs about this topic. Morevever, these bands also included gay members.

On that note, "emo" music was overtly political and inspirational. There was meaning, culture and movment behind the music

fuckin authors censoring every thing

yes they're scene kids. Scene sick as a matter of fact, but you're just as much of a loser as them. You obviously care way too much about what others think or else you wouldn't be posting stupid fucking videos like this to change everyones perception of "emo". Orchid, september, i have dreams, and phasma phasmatis are the bomb-diggity fresh! suck a dick. peace

It's funny how your preaching about this and you are wrong as well. Real emo is The Cure, Depeche Mode, and Tears for fears. It just mean overly emotional music. Any music can be arguably emo, but certain bands portray a sound that is pure emotion. These bands seem to think that screaming covers the entire emotional spectrum.

That is so rite, and if you search the meaning of goth it is a fucking vican or something, it's also a lanuage. Wow look at society in their little lies they try to make themselvs beleve...it's sad

Technically "scene kids" are all posers also. Because "scene" just started as kids who always followed bands on tours they were always ON THE SCENE. Thus, scene kids. That's been blown out of proportion into "I PRETEND TO LIKE HELLO KITTY AND POWER RANGERS AND HAVE BIG FUCKING HAIR SO I'M SCENE." :P

You got most of the video right though.
But gay kids with swooshing hair that cut themselves over false mental problems aren't scene.

i love it how your talking like your talking to a bunch of 3 year olds!!!!!
im like thiss all the time to my friends there like "oh i have an emo friend" and im like "um unless that friend of yours is a band or song no you dont" they look so stupied when i say stuff like that
lollolllolololo hahaha ha hhhhaaaa
peace*love*twilight

o ur just jelous u stupid hoe

for every lame ass phase in music, there always comes a million different theories as to what it really is just to sugar-coat it and make it seem less retarded.....emo is the most fucking stupid and degrading term these days i dont like anyone defending it no matter what anyone thinks it means this week

I don't intend to offend you, but you've got it wrong. You're right that it should never have been used to describe this Goth meets Harry Potter Aestheticore bullshit, and definitely never should have been assigned to that whiney power pop shit.

On July 27, 2009 at 9:21pm Michael Mooney wrote:
It is my view that this "flarfist" writing
is worthless.

On August 2, 2009 at 4:16pm the archaic avatar wrote:
views are for tourists,
snackcracker snapshot.

is this all you can muster to say?

where's the meaty comment?

or at least some kind of explanation for what passes for poetry thru yr worldview.

i mean really, it's enough to make me wanna go " flarf fisting ".

by worthless, you mean it's priceless, right?

DaDa is a soft-boiled egg & all that, value for value, clipping coupons got groceries talkalot parties going straight past midnight,

the time is timely.

thank you for your patronage,
please drive thru.

(paper or plastique?)

On August 2, 2009 at 4:38pm the archaic avatar (an underachiever) wrote:
my dog, my momma, my doorbell & all the dullest butterknives in the damned junkdrawer:
hellfire shitspin & i wish,
i wish i know'd somethin'
but nothing ain't nothing
& nothin' is that somethin' i always seem to have,
at least
my dog told me killer fart jokes,
but then lick'd his gonads,
the danglies wet by words,
my momma, on the mother hand,
talks like birthday
& every dream done told
on that bosom of heavenhigh hellishness,
mayhem for mayhem
mangled my brain maze
thru wide eyed drunkeness
& gurgling vomit in the grimey gutters
of all my lost streetsigns,
woke up by the tongue of my dog
on slobbery alarmclock kissing gentle,
talk to walk
or walk to talk,
there isn't anything to believe in
except the fixing of fixtures,
like a wry smile & blinkless wink,
it's funny how it isn't funny,
but by 'nd by it becomes
just another naptime
to snooze thru strophe
or maybe gleam a shit-eating grin
as i thrust the dullness
of this flat butterknife
across the paranoid texture
of my halfbaked whitebread toast,
can scrambled eggs be any better?

On August 10, 2009 at 12:20pm Nada Nada wrote:
Eh. I thought the cartoon meant to be interesting but...Eh. and I also agree that Flarf is useless.

It's very cool to see a new movement coming along, but god does it seem shallow. We've already got enough dimwit-heavy products dumped on us (TV, for instance, has lots of mind-numbing shows).

I'm sure in the 1920s a lot of people thought that Modernism was just crappy and worthless.

So of course I'm going to dislike this Flarf stuff--but unlike Modernism, Flarf has nothing profound to feed us.

Which I guess is the point. They don't believe in that thing called meaning.

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MORE FROM THIS ISSUE

This prose originally appeared in the July/August 2009 issue of Poetry magazine

July/August 2009
 Gary  Sullivan

Biography

Gary Sullivan is a poet, cartoonist, and author. His comic strip “The New Life” appears in Rain Taxi. He also publishes a comic book, Elsewhere, and a blog by the same name: garysullivan.blogspot.com.

Continue reading this biography

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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