The Commercial

You have twenty nine seconds,
To beckon my attention and make me weep.

To tell me a secret you wish me to keep,

To make me want to go to sleep,

And dream.

It may seem like far too short a duration,

But if done right it can resonate for all time.
You have twenty nine seconds, 

And for this reckoning, you may have to cut 

A check that swings in the neighborhood

Of seven digits. You’d have to sell ALOT of widgets, 

Thingymabobbers, whatchamacallits, and life changing

Must haves.

You have the power to make hearts bleed,

Overwhelm minds, and convince us that wants

Are needs.

You have the power to make some stand and clap,

Remember your jingle which perseveres through crap,

Buy whatever you’re selling, and wrap it up

under the ‘holidays’ tree, lest we offend 


A thought bomb dropped which will rend many bodies

Motionless for a while to come.

With style, and some perfect timing,

Perhaps a bit of poignant rhyming,

And memorable images that represent hope climbing

To a higher place than it was before.

What’s more, perhaps an adorable animal or infant

That speaks in short pithy aphorisms

To the huddled masses of hers and hisms.

In that moment. In that perfect moment, 

You can strike a chord in the heart, manipulate the mind, 

Make us question everything we thought we knew,

And obey our most sinister attributes.

You can herald the coming of all that we hold most dear,

Make us fear, make us weep with joy,

Or shudder in disgust. You can make us trust our guts,

And forget any facts we know.

Show us how we grow, how we gain,

And use a single image that represents no pain. Ever.

You can promise us success, happiness, and sexual


You can hold our attention captive,

While there’s something crazy that’s happening

In the kitchen we truly don’t hear or see.

And that’s just in the next room.

If it’s done well.

When it’s done well.

The doom and gloom isn’t heard or seen.

That doesn’t mean that it isn’t there.

That we couldn’t stare at it or care, if we were there,

With our eyes and ears turned, but where?

It almost isn’t fair, the power you have,

With images, music, famous personalities, 

And even a catchy abstract slogan,

To leave us speechless, breathless,

Waiting for it to show again.
Now, just imagine. Try to muster up the strength and courage

In that beautiful tool called a brain you’ve been given.

If the proverbial they have that magnificent power 

Bundled in a commercial which lasts twenty nine seconds, TWENTY NINE SECONDS.

A time which is NOT VAST.

You couldn’t have gotten past

This poems’ first half.

Just marinate on the power held in a full feature film,

An Internet podcast, or an entire news broadcast.
So please, decipher this cipher as you will.

Crumple this paper up in your brain and through it away

For the thrill.

But still be still, and use that mind

To find the truth and authentic meaning

Behind and between the lines,

To love and be kind,

And remind yourself

That they are all, in the end trying,

To separate your money from your pocket book’s bind,

Leave you deaf and blind,

And take you to anywhere and anyplace

that isn’t here and now.


Being heard, stirred, and perhaps cured by life's many hidden images and the written-spoken word.
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