Rives “if I controlled the internet” text. I wrote this poem after hearing a pretty well known actress tell a very well known interviewer on television, “I’m really getting into the Internet lately. I just wish it were more organized.”
So … If I controlled the Internet, you could auction your broken heart on eBay. Take the money; go to Amazon; buy a phonebook for a country you’ve never been to — call folks at random until you find someone who flirts really well in a foreign language.
If I were in charge of the Internet, you could Mapquest your lover’s mood swings. Hang left at cranky, right at preoccupied, U-turn on silent treatment, all the way back to tongue kissing and good lovin’. You could navigate and understand every emotional intersection. Some days, I’m as shallow as a baking pan, but I still stretch miles in all directions. If I owned the Internet, Napster, Monster and Friendster.com would be one big website. That way you could listen to cool music while you pretend to look for a job and you’re really just chattin’ with your pals.
Heck, if I ran the Web, you could email dead people. They would not email you back – but you’d get an automated reply. Their name in your inbox – it’s all you wanted anyway. And a message saying, “Hey, it’s me. I miss you. Listen, you’ll see being dead is dandy. Now you go back to raising kids and waging peace and craving candy.” If I designed the Internet, childhood.com would be a loop of a boy in an orchard, with a ski pole for a sword, trashcan lid for a shield, shouting, “I am the emperor of oranges. I am the emperor of oranges. I am the emperor of oranges.”
Now follow me, OK? Grandma.com would be a recipe for biscuits and spit-bath instructions. One, two, three. That links with hotdiggitydog.com. That is my grandfather. They take you to gruff-ex-cop-on-his-fourth-marriage.dad. He forms an attachment to kind-of-ditzy-but-still-sends-ginger-snaps-for-Christmas.mom, who downloads the boy in the orchard, the emperor of oranges, who grows up to be me — the guy who usually goes too far.
So if I were emperor of the Internet, I guess I’d still be mortal, huh? But at that point, I would probably already have the lowest possible mortgage and the most enlarged possible penis (Laughter) — so I would outlaw spam on my first day in office. I wouldn’t need it. I’d be like some kind of Internet genius, and me, I’d like to upgrade to deity and maybe just like that — pop! — I’d go wireless. Huh? Maybe Google would hire this.
I could zip through your servers and firewalls like a virus until the World Wide Web is as wise, as wild and as organized as I think a modern-day miracle/oracle can get, but, ooh-eee, you want to bet just how whack and un-PC your Mac or PC is going to be when I’m rocking hot-shit-hot-shot-god.net? I guess it’s just like life. It is not a question of if you can — it’s: do ya? We can interfere with the interface.
We can make “You’ve got Hallelujah” the national anthem of cyberspace every lucky time we log on. You don’t say a prayer. You don’t write a psalm. You don’t chant an “om.” You send one blessed email to whomever you’re thinking of at dah-da-la-dat-da-dah-da-la-dat.com. Thank you!
Who is Rives?
Rives (born 1968) is an American poet, storyteller, and author. He appeared on Seasons 3-6 of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam and was a member of Team Hollywood, which won the 2004 National Poetry Slam. His best-known poems include “Kite,” about waking up alone in a new lover’s apartment, and “Mockingbird,” which he performs differently every time, incorporating the words of other poets and speakers in the program.