A Dangerous Thing

An Almost-True Almost-Poem

by Thomas I. Benton


I did a dangerous thing, vulgar and crass.

My pristine fingertips upon the keyboard typed the phrase

and the google machine answered the question I posed,

the wrong question,

I have a day job to not have to ask that question.

"how do i make money from my website" gives an answer,

sets a price too high for what you can buy.

(I swear, the idea to ask came from somewhere else, please forgive a guy for wondering)

"CTR!" the Internet answered, "Keyword density and SEO!"

"Pick your topic shrewdly!" the Web continued. "Personal finance,

that's where the money is--write about 401ks and re-fis,

then watch the dollars roll in!" (don't ask from whom)

"First debase your treasures, then hide them behind walls made from mouse clicks:

you need page views."

I considered the knowledge delivered to my eyes,

immersed amongst banner ads and huckster spiels, and then

I closed the browser tab and said "fuck off" to the Internet,

and I wrote an almost poem with no SEO.