the relevant inquiry is what to do
with time not spent singing with the cockatoo
the room was spacious and clean
a perfect killing machine
reality is the last thing people want to know
said the preacher in the shadow of cannery row
dust in the air suspended
marks the place where monkeys offended
I lived my life in the spaces between lines
I am that which is not, the air between pines
but what if we’re robots the philosopher twittered
tell me where I can get lubed the bartender tittered
this is the truth then the old sister said folding up her habit
joy is a thorny old flower you have to reach out and grab it
if you treat life like a puzzle to be solved
love must factor out logically uninvolved
the sun was caught in a pounding rain
it’s all sacred and it’s all profane
For more, visit Poetry for Strangers: Relevant
John: Ahoy, mate.
Paul: Watcha got there?
Camus: It’s a giant boulder.
George: We like rock too.
Ringo: Yeah. Rock. Haha.
Paul: Why are you pushing it uphill?
George: It’d be a lot easier the other way, you know.
John: That’s why we rock and roll, not rock and push. I’m dead lazy.
Camus: There is always a philosophy for a lack of courage.
Ringo: Ouch! He told you, mate.
Paul: Let’s help him. C’mon, lads.
John: You go on. I’m not.
[Paul and Camus push at the boulder ineffectually]
Camus: The absurd is lucid reason noting its limit.
Paul: That’s deep, that.
George: So what you’re saying is there’s nothing more daft than pushing this rock uphill?
Camus: Accepting the absurdity of everything around us is one step, a necessary experience: it should not become a dead end. It arouses a revolt that can become fruitful.
John: You’re entirely bonkers, bloke. But the best people are.
Paul: I know! Let’s turn our amps all the way up. It’ll create a sonic blast and it might help push the rock uphill.
George: You mean rock the rock?
Ringo: Rocking the rock will roll the rock? Or roll rock rolling– I’ve confused myself.
John: You’ve confused me. All right, let’s hear some of the rock and roll music!
Paul: One, two, three, four!
[The boys blare Roll Over Beethoven at full blast]
John: Roll over, Big Boulder! Or Camus will keep singing the blues!
[the rock slowly moves uphill]
Paul: It’s working!
John: Reel it, rock it, absurdity! Rocking is absurdity too!
[With the rock at the top of the hill, Camus is impressed]
Camus: At this point of his effort man stands face to face with the irrational.
Ringo: We’re not the irrationals. We’re the Beatles! [Ringo punctuates his joke with a loud ba-dum-boom! The sound quakes the rock, which dislodges and rolls downhill, toward the Beatles and Camus]
Paul: Run for your life!
John: I should have known better!
Camus: To understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion!
Ringo: Turn away faster!
[The boulder comes to a stop at the bottom of the hill; everyone is out of breath.]
John: Sorry, Camus. We can try again.
Camus: Not a second time.
Paul: Bye, then! Don’t be a stranger!
The Beatles Meet Jean Paul Sartre!
Sartre: Excuse me, waiter.
John (disguised as a waiter): Oui, Monsieur?
Sartre: This soup is cold.
John: Oh no! That’s outrageous!
Paul (disguised as restaurant manager): What’s going on here?
John: He says the soup is cold.
Paul: The soup is cold?! That’s outrageous!
John: Your face is outrageous.
Paul: I’ve had enough of your backtalk. [hits John]
Sartre: Please, if you could just–
George (disguised as a cop): What’s going on here?
John: The soup is cold!
George: That’s not a crime.
Paul: You snitch! [hits John again]
George: All right, enough of you lot. [arrests John & Paul, exeunt]
Sartre: My soup is still cold.
Ringo [in wig and dress, sits at table]: Oi, Jean.
Sartre: Who are you?
Ringo: Don’t you know your own girlfriend? It’s me, Simone.
Sartre: Talk about bad faith.
John: You say you want a revolution?
Che: Si, Senor Moptop.
John: Well, you know, we all want to change the world.
Che: Let the world change you and you can change the world.
John: But when you talk about destruction, you can count me out.
Che: The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall.
John: Don’t you know it’s gonna be all right?
Che: We cannot be sure of having something to live for unless we are willing to die for it.
John: If you want money for people with minds that hate, all I can tell you, brother, is you have to wait.
Che: The true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love. It is impossible to think of a genuine revolutionary lacking this quality.
John: All right! All right! All right!
Hamlet: Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.
John: Is it your shorts? You’ve got to change them out every week.
Ringo: I’m not wearing any.
George: Oy, mate, you’ve got to cheer up. All this to be or not to be jazz is gettin’ me down.
Paul: You’ve got a nice girl.
John: She loves you.
George: She almost lost her mind.
Paul: Don’t you want to hold her hand?
Hamlet: My uncle murdered me dad!
Paul: That’s a bummer.
John: Yeah, a real drag.
Ringo: I guess it can be bad.
John: You ever read any Kant, Ringo?
Ringo: I tried but I can’t.
George: Well, he bangs on about the categorical imperative.
Ringo: What’s that?
Paul: It’s like the golden rule.
Ringo: Him with the gold rules?
John: Not that golden rule, you daft git.
George: Do unto others, you know.
Ringo: Before they do unto you.
Paul: No, no, that’s not it.
Ringo: What’s an unto?