k ge zhi wang attends a poetry reading, by Joshua Ip

10 November 2012

k ge zhi wang attends a poetry reading.
he’s bored. they really are just reading poems.
the title’s not the slightest bit misleading.
where’s the performance? he wants to go home.

in karaoke, in his element,
originals are shunned. one is expected
to perform the standards before vent-
uring into new tunes. it’s called respect:

to the k gods, who echo in the ether;
to captive audiences who retain
the option to join in at the refrain.
he has the following feedback for the reader:

   read me familiar stories, stanzas, quotes –
nobody wants to hear what you just wrote.

[Read in Sonnets from the Singlish, published by Math Paper Press. ‘K ge zhi wang’ is, literally, ‘karaoke king’.]

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