Thursday, March 7, 2013


From Wikipedia on WYSIWYG:
The phrase was coined in 1982 by Larry Sinclair, an engineer at Triple I (Information International, Inc.), to express the idea that what the user sees on the screen is what the user gets on the printer while using the "page layout system", a pre-press typesetting system first shown at ANPS in Las Vegas. The phrase was popularized by a newsletter published by Arlene and Jose Ramos, called WYSIWYG. It was created for the emerging Pre-Press industry going electronic in the late 1970s. After three years of publishing, the newsletter was sold to employees at the Stanford Research Institute in California.

The prhrase "Whay you see is what you get," from which the acronym derives, was a catchphrase popularized by Flip Wilson's drag personal "Geraldine" (from Rowan; Martin's Laugh-in in the late 1960s. Geraldine would often say it to excuse her quirky behavior. 

*end of quote*

And what do you know, my other name is Geraldine. 

Now, tack to the poem.


What you see
Is what I am
I won’t pretend to be deep
I won’t cast furtive, sideway glances
To make you think I’m enigmatic
I won’t give you cryptic lines
To show a shadow of something dark
Hidden, lurking behind a half-smile
No. If I try to be perplexing
And pretend to be mystifying
I will laugh at myself
And then I’ll make you a PowerPoint slide
To be sure you get
What I’m really saying
If you call me mysterious
I’ll say you’re full of crap
Figuratively, of course.
Figures of speech, I shun 
Preferring the literal
What you see is
What there is
Yes, I have my dirty secrets
But who doesn’t?
But the Venn diagram
Of what I show outside
And what I am inside
In the well-lit caverns of my psyche
Is a fairly expansive circle
Because my life is one big open book
The spine split wide open
The pages dog-eared and well worn
With nothing much in between the lines
The story of my life is open source
Password not required
Because I can be a whore for attention
Desperate for a reaction
My status even strangers
And their friends of friends know about
What I had for dinner
Snapped and posted
Liked and commented
Shared and quoted
My brain is not a mollusk shell
With meandering paths
And unexplored tunnels
My guts are spilled
For all the world to see
My innards exposed
My heart bared
If anyone cared to look
Every little pang of emotion documented
Every imagined poignancy exploited
You see, I’m in the in the business of sharing
Distributing the little that I know
People pay to learn about the stuff 
I manage to google and stuff inside my
Pretty uncomplicated noggin
I prefer the efficiency of information
Over the enchantment of the unknown
I have no time to be coy
I have no patience for innuendos
Unless they’re the funny, dirty kind
Which you say with an obvious wink wink
That makes me guffaw because I got your joke
I know, I know
I’m boring
But really, the need to be clear
Far outweighs the need to be sublime
Metaphors confuse me
The metaphysical can never trump
The clarity of reality
The ambiguous leaves me confused
Hints flummox my simple mind
Just hit me with the truth any time
And I’ll say thank you for telling it to me bluntly
Yes, that means I'm shallow
Like a saucer
Wide open
Unlocked, ajar
Your irony will probably escape me
If you say no, I hear no
If you say you’re hungry
I assume you need food
And not that your soul  
Is famished
Or your spirit ravenous
For some nebulous craving
Look at my face
And you see pretty much the wall behind me
Transparent like cellophane
Predictable like August rain
Symbols my ass
Semiotics—a pain
What you see
Whether you like it or not
Is what you get

So the question is
Why rest from prose
Why poetize
Why deviate from paragraphs
And delve into stanzas
I don’t know
It's just that sometimes
When I least expect it
A word gurgles out
From somewhere visceral
A bubble of a thought
Refuses to conform to the regular syntax
And the enter button insists
On moving to the next line
Leaving the last one unpunctuated
To form narrow columns
Instead of broad walls of text
I don’t know where they come from
There is rarely rhyme
And even less common—reason
I don't even know
How to do it right
But who cares
I just write
What feels like poetry
Listening intently
To the uncontrolled sentiments
The unstructured statements
And I relax my silly grammar rules
And let the words flow
Unfenced by patterns
Unhampered by justified margins
And they just pour out
A jumble of misplaced ideas
And molted musings
Spewed out
From a place uncharted
Maybe somewhere
In a body drenched with words
Somewhere in there
Where I’ve never bothered to look
Just maybe
Just maybe
I’m deep after all
Or not