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Sean Penn Anti-Ode

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Must Sean Penn always look like he’s squeezing
the last drops out of a sponge and the sponge
is his face? Even the back of his head grimaces.
Just the pressure in his little finger alone
could kill a gorilla. Remember that kid
whose whole trick was forcing blood into his head
until he looked like the universe’s own cherry bomb
so he’d get the first whack at the piñata?
He’s grown up to straighten us all out
about weapons of mass destruction
but whatever you do, don’t ding his car door with yours.
Don’t ask about his girlfriend’s cat.
Somewhere a garbage truck beeps backing up
and in these circumstances counts as a triumph of sanity.
Sleet in the face, no toilet paper,
regrets over an argument, not investing wisely,
internment of the crazy mother, mistreatment
of laboratory animals.
Life, my friends, is ordinary crap.
Pineapple slices on tutu-wearing toothpicks.
Those puke bags in the seatback you might need.
The second DVD only the witlessly bored watch.
Some architectural details about Batman’s cape.
Music videos about hairdos, tattoos, implants and bling.
The crew cracking up over some actor’s flub.

Source: Poetry (July 2006)

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This poem originally appeared in the July 2006 issue of Poetry magazine

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Sean Penn Anti-Ode

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