POEM: To Mr. Mack Sennett, on His Animated Pictures

Thanks to Mr. Gart Westerhout for pointing this out to me.

To Mr. Mack Sennett, on His Animated Pictures

SENNETT! Regard, I pray, our cinema –
Its endless reels of rancid agonies.
The drear dilemmas of its formula.
There is no laughter in Los Angeles.

CHAPLIN, arouse! Up, up, my HAROLD LLOYD!
Ah, where is CONKLIN? MABEL NORMAND, where?
Only the coils of Technicolored FREUD
Discharge their nonsense on the shuddering air.

Mack SennettBetimes a notice strikes the casual eye:
“You’ll scream, you’ll yell, you’ll whoop at A or B!
You’ll foam and froth and faint at X and Y!”
Let others titter. They amuse not me.

Ah, no. I’ll bid old memories arise.
Let the dead pan of LANGDON soothe my soul
Watch TURPIN roll his independent eyes.
And the flung custard seeks its human goal.

-Morris Bishop, page 22 in “The New Yorker,” Jan. 22, 1949

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