Sunday, January 24, 2010

Feature: T.M. Göttl Day 1

This week's feature is T. M. Göttl. T.M. is a very talented open mic performer in the Cleveland area and a poet we admire very much here at *Mnemosyne*. We know you'll love her too! Q&A questions provided by our co-editor, Christina Brooks. :-)

**** **** **** ****


T.M. Göttl is a member of the Buffalo ZEF Creative Community, writing and performing her poetry throughout her homestate of Ohio, and beyond. The first time she entered a slam-style poetry competition, she won first place, and she won a Wayne College Regional Writing Award, as well as a Franklin-Christof Poetry Prize. T.M. Göttl's work has appeared in numerous online and print publications, including The Hessler Street Fair Anthology, Deep Cleveland, The Mill, The Poet's Haven, Opium Poetry, as well as appearances on 91.3 WAPS The Summit and 89.7 WOSU radio stations. Her first full-length collection, Stretching the Window, was published by Buffalo ZEF in 2008.

**** **** **** ****


This is a poem about cheese.
Parmesan, camembert,
brie, pepper jack, provolone.

Grilled cheese, string cheese,
Swiss cheese, shredded cheese,
sliced cheese, E-Z cheese
(which never had any integrity anyway),
macaroni and cheese,
the cheese that my vegan friends
don’t eat anymore.

All the commercials
telling you to buy cheese,
to go to the store, aisle after aisle,
carefully selecting wheels and blocks,
reading the labels to indulge our

Because this poem
is also about failure,
about trusting too much to the people
who let us eat poison, who let our children
eat poison, and who then sell us little
every-colored pills that may cause
liver failure, blindness, cancer,
blood clots, hang nails, acne,
birth defects, and flu-like symptoms.
But don’t worry; your sinuses
will be perfectly clear.

Because this isn’t about cheese at all.
This is about all the addictions
to alcohol, nicotine,
coffee, tea, television,
online gaming, YouTube,
MySpace, romance novels,
Chapstick, The Home Shopping Network,
and Facebook.

And meanwhile,
there’s a lotus blossom
pounding on the front door
because the neighbors all
gathered on the front lawn,
circle-singing Gregorian chant and changing
all the words to the Creed.
The demons crowd our voicemail boxes,
and we throw away stardust with
the junk mail and the ads.
We don’t bother noticing
when the trees stopped singing,
when the streets filled with slush,
and the skies filled with gray.
We count words as if they mattered
anymore than a grade point average mattered
after graduation.

Meanwhile, the pendulum swings,
a pine tree ticks like a
falling clock,

and I’ve been lying.

Because this poem never really was
about cheese.

© T.M. Göttl (previously published in a Saturday Night With the Poet's Haven PodCast)


  1. Very cool.. I'm so used to hearing these it's nice to see them on paper too.

    One of my favorites of yours. Nice to see you here on Mnemosyne.

  2. I really love that poem!