Lines For the Fortune Cookies Redux

Today I challenge you to re-write Frank O’Hara’s Lines for the Fortune Cookies.

Your bathroom will be your bedroom tonight.

Is your name Karen? Susan? Maria? Lisbeth? Yu Wei?

Parents make a world of difference, don’t they?

The pen is mightier than the sword, but pales in comparison to the gun.

Your first date will be in an ice cream van with a pair of binocs. Things get sticky.

Mistakes lead to planes and towers interacting inappropriately.

The scars left by the knives in your back don’t prepare you for the next ones.

Your fears have numbed your body, you are invincible to pain.

You hold back on the weaponry to avoid doing the paperwork later.

You should factor the safety and freedom an office desk provides.

You can’t judge a book by its cover, but you can judge a cover by interrogating the target.

Whenever a mouth makes small talk with you, put a grenade in it and pull the pin.

You are a brook that flows over blood and loss.

Pop culture cheapens you and you can’t do anything about it.

Speed thrills, but kills passengers who neglect to wear seat belts.

That’s not a run in your stocking, it’s a hand on your leg. You break it.

You are met with guilt as often as God speaks to you. He remains mute.

So close have you come to the edge with the words teetering on the tip of your tongue.

Every shiny medal you receive wants to block the darkness from spreading.

Your mother is proud of your job without knowing what it is.

Don’t confuse solitude with loneliness, everyone else in this room secretly yearns for silence.

You visit your house instead of living in it.

Her room will be the one you always wanted, with the velvet curtains and a waterbed.

The wine at the bottom of the glass hypnotizes you.

You know the launch codes. Where are they?


Frank O'Hara

Attribution: Frank O’Hara’s grave, Green River Cemetery, Springs, NY by J.Zay, CC-BY-NC-2.0



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