Culture was a tangled set of headphones,
tying itself into knots based on arbitrary labels
that had more to do with geography and lineage than politics.
Left and right earpieces listening to themselves,
dismissing a jack plugged into the same machine.
Generations gradually inundated with and drowning
in the snack of entertainment,
a quick hit of surrogate nonsense.
Somewhere between Colbert and Facebook
blinded to a cult of celebrity,
which, after enough hammering, had been mistaken for clout.
Yelling at one another with bombastic enthusiasm,
vitriol backed by smoke.
Learning from headlines and regurgitating as gospel,
listening to anything that might sublimate an opinion.
A population devout-- only-- to something with a screen.
Nations of apprentices,
disciples of leisure and amusement.
A marketing glitch, a mass of consumers-- wondering what happened.
Thinking news failed,
when news has only ever served, on a platter,
whatever it believed might please.
It was thought that was missing,
because when all you’ve been fed is cheap laughs,
you miss the joke.