Stop Reading This Poem!
by Ken Wheatcroft-Pardue

Stop reading this poem!
______It will take 36 1/3 days off your life.
______I guarantee it!

______Stop reading this poem!
______It will not get you tenure.
______And most certainly won’t get you ahead.

______What did I say?
Stop reading this poem!
______It will not raise the Gross Domestic Product
______1/1000 of a scintilla of an iota.
______It cures nothing.
______In fact, it’s guaranteed to produce hair loss.

______Don’t read this poem!
______It’s already too long and doesn’t even rhyme.

______Do not read this poem!
______It will neither tighten your ass nor tan your skin.
______And it will never make your teeth pearly white.

If you read this poem,
your underarms will not stay dry,
and you’ll never become popular
with those who snubbed you when you were young.

Do not read this poem!
You were confused when you started,
and, look at you, you’re still confused.

This poem does not illuminate,
nor can it eliminate unhappiness.
You’ll win no medals for reading this poem.

In fact, it just might cause you to curve off the beaten path,
to drive – just drive away from what was once your life
so steeped in habit you long ago stopped noticing
how the world like shrink wrap had contracted around you.

You see, it’s just a poem,
but if you’ve read this far:
Start over!

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