Ghost in the Machine poetry: I SWEAR I did not change a word here.

So here I am, curious to see exactly what happens when you just replay a phone call for Windows’ speech recognition software. I had a audio file already on my computer, in fact: I had called my mom to test that my Powergramo was properly recording my Skype calls.  This is the first four minutes or so of that call.  For the record, we discussed the winter coats my mom bought for my kids and whether Elizabeth Warren was going to run for President.

This is what the Ghost in the Machine heard.

You have a glowing and
I am black and
white and
black and
or guy hunt
when it easy on late
buying a eating mile high
here in L.a.
or had been all
or lay any real victory
in the night
her a call to you
when you
what you are in green
or locking bang
not have the lead on a hot
in all right
out of L.a. AL all right a AL
all are a lot of the end of the whole
can I have here a high of the high heat
and he has that
it does-whack on honey
and he who have a jack
or a high rate
of a hell of a male
right away
or a EL wok

For the record, I only added line breaks.

Permit me to cut through the chaff of this ‘Oh, woe! I am a white, male poet…’

‘…who is utterly too privileged to be allowed to stay a white, male poet in this milieu’ nonsense.  I don’t actually want to slam Conor Friedersdorf’s response: it’s kindly meant, I don’t actually disagree with most of it, and I suppose that sometimes you have to try to talk to these people in the manner to which they are accustomed. However, this is a ‘problem’ that can be solved fairly concisely:

  • If you are a poet who is concerned that the state of poetry is such that not enough new voices are being heard, and if you have a high enough stature that you can be an effective sponsor of new voices, do so.
  • If you do not have a high enough stature, acquire that stature first.

See? Simple, straightforward, and you can get back to writing poetry with all due speed. Continue reading Permit me to cut through the chaff of this ‘Oh, woe! I am a white, male poet…’