"Window on the World"

A weekly poem, read by the author.
Sept. 11 2003 11:07 AM

Window on the World

Listen to Alfred Corn reading this poem. Time after time a glitch immobilized the screen At Windows Is Shutting Down, the program icon hanging

Fire in paradoxical support of its sign-off
Caption during that long month of graveyard shifts

And pre-dawn vigils I spent sifting online fallout
Of terror, pity, and insight posted to the globe.

Nine-Eleven, Nine-Eleven, hear it, a ravaged
SOS, our call to arms and talisman,

The dateline turning septic with its subtext, spun
Out by the Web's ten-thousand arachnes, so many

Forwarding Auden's "Those to whom evil is done do
Evil in return." And done again by enraged

Coevals, sheer reaction's critical mass redoubling
Topical fission, escalation, devolution,

A huge acridity that spikes air-quality graphs,
That floats down on a waterproofed black jacket's yellow

And gray stripes as the bearded fireman doffs his helmet
At the sky, twin tear-streaks guttering a mask of ashes.


Time travel: From our early-'70s Grand Street loft space
In pre-consumer-heaven SoHo, W.



More Than Scottish Pride

Scotland’s referendum isn’t about nationalism. It’s about a system that failed, and a new generation looking to take a chance on itself. 

IOS 8 Comes Out Today. Do Not Put It on Your iPhone 4S.

Why Greenland’s “Dark Snow” Should Worry You

Three Talented Actresses in Three Terrible New Shows

The Human Need to Find Connections in Everything

It’s the source of creativity and delusions. It can harm us more than it helps us.


Happy Constitution Day!

Too bad it’s almost certainly unconstitutional.

The Ungodly Horror of Having a Bug Crawl Into Your Ear and Scratch Away at Your Eardrum

My Father Was James Brown. I Watched Him Beat My Mother. Then I Married Someone Like Him.

  News & Politics
Sept. 17 2014 2:57 PM ISIS Helps Snuff Out Conservative Opposition to Government Funding Bill
Business Insider
Sept. 17 2014 1:36 PM Nate Silver Versus Princeton Professor: Who Has the Right Models?
Sept. 17 2014 1:59 PM Ask a Homo: Secret Ally Codes 
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 17 2014 1:26 PM Hey CBS, Rihanna Is Exactly Who I Want to See on My TV Before NFL Games
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 17 2014 9:37 AM Is Slate Too Liberal?  A members-only open thread.
Brow Beat
Sept. 17 2014 1:01 PM A Rare, Very Unusual Interview With Michael Jackson, Animated
Future Tense
Sept. 17 2014 12:35 PM IOS 8 Comes Out Today. Do Not Put It on Your iPhone 4S.
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 17 2014 11:18 AM A Bridge Across the Sky
Sports Nut
Sept. 15 2014 9:05 PM Giving Up on Goodell How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.