A ventriloquist’s dummy, a wooden hack with a dopey, frozen, caught cheater’s grin: that’s how I often felt during my half-life as a conduit of current events suitable for attracting commuters’ attention and advertisers’ cash.

Like an tubular apparatus for prevarication facilitation, I would snake up to those famous, fatuous, almost and not, and each and every one, like avuncular Edgar Bergens would shake my hand and then slide their Crisco fists up my check-needy Charley McCarthy, as I, or rather, they, spoke to the world.

Sometimes, I’d mouth a meat clever quip of my own, but even those came from a sanctioned subversiveness, manufactured dissent, as Noam Chomsky would say, himself just another Edgar Bergen, with his activist arm and linguist fingers manipulating reality deep inside my butt.


-Nick Ravo is a Seattle poet, and former reporter for metro staff of The New York Times. His creative work has been published, often under pen names, in Open Letters Monthly, Treehouse, Poetry Salzburg Review, Evergreen Review and other journals in the United States and abroad.


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