Video Game

enter the poem reader
through pixel light and pixel day
cube-angled cowed to the future fetish
walls close in
because you are in the game reader
the purple hole awaits its obsidian crown

you wander the green path
toward the portal I built for you

it is not unlike a perfect portal
to your own childhood reader
as you commanded chrono trigger
red haired antag with complex arcs and variable moods
with infinitely variable chess-like combat
i built you this game

so you could learn reader
infinite variables of advantage and counter-advantage

the sun sets in pixels unrendered
the world chips away as you advance
you must choose between sword and mind
the rest is sealed
the minds go south
the swords go north

the minds find beaches serenity
and vacation anxiety

swords fight murder football
and grease up the gears of politics
with real threat
with gamble and control
you take up a mighty blue sword reader
it collects the sunset’s light

bathes the woods in more of fading day
follow the blue path I have summoned

wander the swamp past the aisle of flies
find an ancient song
in the flute of a lost warlock
who has at beck and heel scores of goblins
you approach the warlock’s halls
chainmail and leather tunic chafe you reader

your sword grows heavy in your hand
a goblin leaps at you when you’re already feeling down

with dagger blazing
with goat throat that no 10,000 frogs could approximate
with phlegm-stuck roar
it leaps for your throat reader
slay the goblin reader
for it hates all that you love

in its version of the world
you don’t get to dig deep into infinite wild soil

or hold glimmering gold
you have acquired 168 resources
along the way
on accident
bugs and bottled thought
the walls grow closer today

reader you will want to find better weapons or flee
the plants build engines

choppers reap wheat and seed
bloodhounds trip on their own greed
hoofbeat to signal bottomless flame
they are upon us
you’ve been here too long reader
the game is over

Will Vincent’s chapbook, Wildfires: I-XVI was recently published with speCt!. His poems and articles have appeared in The Elephants, Scout, PANK Magazine, Entropy, HTML Giant, and The Iowa Review. He co-wrote a short film with Adam Shecter and edited a chapbook of the same title for the video installation New Year, displayed at the Eleven Rivington gallery in New York. He lives in Culver City, California.

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