Poem by Taylor Mali – “Totally like whatever, you know?”

Just thought I’d share a bit of poetry with you. But don’t panic. It’s entirely relevant!

In case you hadn’t realised,
it has somehow become uncool
to sound like you know what you’re talking about?
Or believe strongly in what you’re, like, saying?
Invisible question marks and parenthetical you know’s and you know what I’m sayings
have been attaching themselves to the ends of our sentences?
Even when those sentences aren’t, like, questions?

Declarative sentences – so-called
because they used to, like, DECLARE things to be true, ok
as opposed to other things that are, like, totally, you know, not –
they’ve been infected by a this tragically cool
and totally hip interrogative tone?
As if I’m saying,
 don’t think I’m a nerd just because I’ve, like,  noticed this; ok
I have nothing personally invested in my own opinions,
I’m just, like, inviting you to join me on the band wagon of my own uncertainty
What has happened to our conviction?
Where are the limbs out on which we once walked?
Have they been, like, chopped down
with the rest of the rain forest? you know?
Or do we have, like, nothing to say?
Has society just become so filled with these conflicting feelings of ‘nugh’ . . .
That we’ve just gotten to the point where we’re the most aggressively inarticulate generation
to come along since . . .
you know, a long time ago!

So I implore you, I entreat you and I challenge you
To speak with conviction.
To say what you believe in a manner that bespeaks
the determination with which you believe it.
Because contrary to the wisdom of the bumper sticker,
it is not enough these days to simply QUESTION AUTHORITY.
You’ve got to speak with it, too.


About metoenglish

I'm a CELTA-qualified, online English language teacher. I'm relaunching the MetoEnglish site and gradually bringing this blog back up to speed. I can provide a variety of English language services so, if you're looking for ESL/ESOL services and resources, or want to improve your English language skills, please email me for more information. Thanks! Mike
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2 Responses to Poem by Taylor Mali – “Totally like whatever, you know?”

  1. slpmartin says:

    Thanks for posting this…it was very enjoyable and funny.

    • metoenglish says:

      Thanks for the comment, I’m glad you liked it. You can see some more of his stuff on youtube you might like it.
      I really enjoyed reading some of your blogs aswell.

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