Created in an instant,
by a single thought, I was first beheld
resting inside a mind’s palm,
within the deep center of the gray palace of thought
close to the amethyst’s mounting
where the lens of third-eye thought
is forever and intensely focused.
But that is not where I was
first conceived. I was almost infinitesimal
when the world began. I was
one grain of the last pulverized diamond
left over from when the universe died to rebirth itself again;
only atoms disconnecting and tumbling
out of the diamond lattice could have been
any smaller than I. But then, I began to
It only takes a moment
to give birth to invisibility. I’d been
curled up within the cosmic mass,
watching worlds pass from behind the
diaphanous veil that separates idea
from physical matter. One day, I transfigured
from a little thing with hooves into
something with a vertical corona of
hair and wind twisting against each other
and aiming ears and eyes in any direction I pleased
to hold this world of carbon, breath, and concrete
and feed it into where my thoughts reign
(or is it rein?).
And yet, as a real thing,
I am still imperceptible unless I am
straddled and ridden through your streets
soiled and spoiled, or scrubbed clean. I might
be halcyon with wings from the back of
a careless Greek, or I might be violet and smoke
like the skin of a jinni, or I might be
verdant like a newborn giant upon whose
shoulders my first rider stood – but you
will never know. Before I could even
try to take physical form,
as I have been told, I was translated
into a meme.
The world knows me, and yet
does not. And even more amazing still,
everybody’s looking on – nay, they are
transfixed. I am the king of equines,
unsaddled, carrying the best of Korea
on my back: put your ears to the pavements
in Gangnam and you will hear my hooves
pounding fame into their asphalt backs. Yes,
I am now legend.
© 2012 Nicole Nicholson. All Rights Reserved.
This poem was written for We Write Poems Prompt #126: Your Masquerade Party in which we were directed to write a persona poem.
Being no stranger to persona poems, I wanted to do something different. In case you haven’t figured it out, the speaker of this poem is the “invisible horse” that South Korean rapper Psy is riding in the “Gangnam Style” dance.
The poem was also partially inspired by R.E.M.’s song, “King of Birds”, one of my favorites off of their 1987 album Document. The phrase “everybody’s looking on” in the last stanza is quoted from that song. And who knew that you could combine inspiration by R.E.M. and Psy in the same poem.
I wanted somehow to pay homage to what I consider a massive cultural happening on a global scale. I’m 36 years old and I have never seen anything like this happen in my lifetime. No other piece of popular culture has become this widespread, and on such a global scale, as what we are witnessing with this video now.
Maybe it’s wishful thinking, but if a viral video could spread all over the world to this magnitude and degree, then maybe other positive things can spread — love, peace, respect, religious tolerance, etc.? One can dream, can’t she?
If you haven’t heard of “Gangnam Style”, check out the first video above that started the whole craze. Psy released this song in July of 2012. The video started become extremely popular when after being tweeted and shared by K-Pop fans it was shared on Twitter by the likes of Brittney Spears, T-Pain, and others. By August 14, it was the number one viewed video on YouTube and as of this post, is nearing 360 million views. The song has become #1 on music charts in the UK and the United States, and in many other countries — a feat no South Korean artist has ever achieved before.