Ode to Browsing the Web

By Marcus Wicker b. 1984 Marcus Wicker
Two spiky-haired Russian cats hit kick flips
on a vert ramp. The camera pans to another

pocket of  the room where six kids rocking holey
T-shirts etch aerosol lines on warehouse walls

in words I cannot comprehend. All of this
happening in a time no older than your last

heartbeat. I’ve been told the internet is
an unholy place — an endless intangible

stumbling ground of false deities
dogma and loneliness, sad as a pile of shit

in a world without flies. My loneliness exists
in every afterthought. Yesterday, I watched

a neighbor braid intricate waves of cornrows
into her son’s tiny head and could have lived

in her focus-wrinkled brow for a living. Today
I think I practice the religion of  blinking too much.

Today, I know no neighbor’s name and won’t
know if  I like it or not. O holy streaming screen

of counterculture punks, linger my lit mind
on landing strips — through fog, rain, hail — 

without care for time or density. O world
wide web, o viral video, o god of excrement

thought. Befriend me. Be fucking infectious.
Move my eyes from one sight to the next.

Source: Poetry (October 2013).


This poem originally appeared in the October 2013 issue of Poetry magazine

October 2013
 Marcus  Wicker


Marcus Wicker was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He is the author of Maybe the Saddest Thing (2012), selected by D.A. Powell for the National Poetry Series. His awards include a Ruth Lilly Fellowship, Pushcart Prize, as well as fellowships from Cave Canem, and The Fine Arts Work Center. His work has appeared in Poetry, American Poetry Review, Oxford American, and many other magazines.

Wicker is the poetry editor of Southern . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Life Choices, Time & Brevity, Social Commentaries, Popular Culture

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

Poetic Terms Couplet, Free Verse

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