FAKE DOCTORS ON THE CABIN'S CABLE
My fake doctor is better than your fake doctor
was what we were really muttering in the corner.
Guessing every plot twist before it happened.
Imagining what our TV doctor would say
in the situations presented. Something witty
and sarcastic, brilliant if not just plain mean—
the kind of mean that makes you suck
the insult through a clench-teeth grimace
as if you didn’t believe he’d just said that,
but you always did, and it always fit.
Or maybe he’d take his cane and break the fourth wall,
knowing the idiocy he was surrounded by
couldn’t possibly be real, like in the second season's finale.
Their doctors didn’t seem to know a migraine
from an MRI, and spent altogether too much time
finding the angles of love octagons, and too little
with the patients we were supposed to believe paid their bills.
And even I didn’t realize how ridiculous it was,
sitting at a table with three other fans of the better doctor
doctrine, trying to make witty comments
about their doctor show’s weaknesses, of which, I believe
any non-partisan observer would note there are many.
I felt like a cynical doctor myself when the cliffhanger
ending to the episode said someone would die, and I
quipped, just loudly enough for the others to hear, “I hope
it’s the writers.” We snickered, and they pretended
not to hear, and maybe they didn’t, because when the show
was over, we played cards and spoke of other,
non-confrontational things intentionally,
as if we knew that our fake doctor preferences
would never be the same, and decided not to waste
our time trying to convert each other.
We dealt everyone an equal hand, and laughed,
and though at the time it seemed natural to do,
we all knew we were right, and wanted to prove
what couldn’t be proven, like so many things.
SEVEN TALES OF ORIGIN
- There was nothing,
then, for no reason whatsoever
- All matter is a yo-yo string.
- Somewhere else there was something.
They flew it, or, not necessarily flew,
but cruised, or traveled, well,
we’re not sure how they got it here,
but they did, and we need proof
to show we’re not crazy.
- Everything is nothing
but someone dreaming
about yo-yo’s and rocket ships
and French bakery croissant-air and
graffitied blue mail boxes.
- A magician pulled a universe
out of a hat that had previously
been empty, you all saw it,
and personally directs
each rabbit and flea
on each little hop.
- There’s always been everything
in one form or another.
Trees were inorganic molecules
floating aimlessly in nothingness
like a sunglassed kid in his pool
on the last day of summer.
- Who cares. The sun’s shining
from its nuclear furnace in the vacuum of space,
the grass’s green comes from chlorophyll,
and watermelon seeds are simply not pleased
unless they’re swimming in a mouth,
then spat as far as possible
from a plaid blanket on a treeless green hill
as the merry-go-round spins slowly
in the breeze
that seems to come from nowhere.
Zebulon Huset is a Pushcart nominate poet whose work has recently appeared or is forthcoming from The Southern Review, The New York Quarterly, The Georgetown Review, The Cortland Review, Thin Air, Harpur Palate, The North American Review, Spillway and The Evansville Review among others. He posts a writing exercise/prompt blog called Notebooking Daily and teaches a community creative writing class in El Cajon, CA.