A Favorite Poem (Issue #34)

Greetings, poetry aficionados!

I’m presenting my current “A Favorite Poem” issue for this month. Titled “House Hunters” by Kevin Prufer, it deviates from the usual “serious, meaningful” poems that many poets strive for, and instead is an easy, tongue-in-cheek look at how reality TV can be so ridiculous, yet so popular in today’s media-obsessed world.

House Hunters (by Kevin Prufer)

I love the crown molding and the white granite countertops.

And look, dear! Stainless steel appliances! Don’t you love them?

It’s such a perfect apartment, and, in every room, a coffered ceiling.

And don’t you love the pink twin sinks, like porcelain scallops?

And listen to the faucets,

like the rush of a waterfall heard through thick woods just as the birds began to sing early one morning years ago in the hills outside Florence.

Where are you going?

Love fills me the way the sun surprises the room when I pull the string and the curtains open.

Pinch-pleat curtains, crinkle-voile, semi-opaque, and sheer! Soft as love when I stroke them, warm as love against my cheek, a scent of spring rain gentling the petunias when I wrap myself in them

until I cannot see, until I cannot move my arms or legs.

Of course, I’d love to see the guest bedroom with its walk-in closet and built-in shoe shelf, its en suite bath with the whirlpool tub!

Let me just wipe my eyes on these curtains. Let me just untangle.

The view through this window is so lovely, the far fingers of smoke trembling over the distant city where the workers—

rich black thoughts pour from the smokestacks is all I have to say about the workers.

No, sorry, I’m still here, wrapped in the curtains. They were so alluring,

voluptuous, really, if curtains can be voluptuous against bare skin. You continue with the tour, dear,

and I’ll be along presently. The sky is rose chiffon, the clouds like pressed flowers above the smokestacks,

just leave me here, restrained and lavished at once! And the window, with its inviting coolness

to the tongue. To my tongue. It’s like I am licking those smokestacks!

What I find so interesting is that, according to Prufer, he took some lines spoken by house-buyers on HGTV’s House Hunters and incorporated them into the poem. He went even further to show the absurdity of it all by blending unusual moments (e.g. “Let me just wipe my eyes on these curtains. Let me just untangle,” “It’s like I am licking those smokestacks!”) in a synthesthetic way. It’s a matter of combining and juxtaposing the senses (taste with normal sight/touch, and vice versa) to give it that surrealist atmosphere to it.

As I’ve written, “House Hunters” isn’t meant to be a deep or meaningful poem, although I can see why some people might take it to mean just how absurd reality TV has become these days (i.e. being calculated and scripted, instead of “natural”). But the way I see it, the poem is just pure fun, as it’s merely poking fun at the ridiculousness of it all. Especially when it seems that poets are taking themselves too seriously nowadays (as well as getting easily offended when audiences don’t like their work), reminding oneself that poetry can also unsurprisingly be whimsical and lightheartedness, which I think is a way to rekindle that passion for writing poetry.

Feel free to give this poem a read. Enjoy your day!

— The Finicky Cynic

Check me out on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/thefinickycynic

2 thoughts on “A Favorite Poem (Issue #34)

  1. “Especially when it seems that poets are taking themselves too seriously nowadays (as well as getting easily offended when audiences don’t like their work)”

    You are absolutely right, there any many examples of fun and whimsical poems that don’t take themselves too seriously.
    I don’t believe this one is a good example *at all*, but you are extremely correct nonetheless.

    1. rebbit7

      Thanks, I believe that poetry doesn’t always need to be heavy and thought-provoking. Sometimes, it can just be a fun jest.

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