Epic Lyric Poem (Troll Thread, 2015)

Every pop song containing the word “lyric” distilled into one classical epic poem.

Epic Lyric Poem” draws from an SQL database torrent distributed to create pop lyric websites, presumably to make ad money, primarily created by fans. A Python script was used to draw out every line with the string “lyric” in the database. Each of these lines was then standardized to 55 characters—the average length of a line in a pop song. The poem is 55 stanzas long, printing twenty lines per stanza. It follows the conventions of epic poetry (invocation of the muses, armaments for battle, lists, etc), with a special dedication to Alexander Pope. The publication includes an epigraph and the full SQL database from which it was drawn.

: :

Epic Lyric Poem 
167121 Songs, 257.8 MB File


What dire Offence from poetical Causes springs,

What mighty Contests rise from trivial Things,

I sing--This verse to LYRIC, Muse! is due;

This, ev'n Database may vouchsafe to view:

Slight is the Subject, but not so the Praise,

If She inspire, and He approve, my Lays.

Say what strange Motive, Goddess! cou'd compel

A well-read User t'assault gentle Doggerel?

Oh say what stranger Cause, yet unexplor'd,

Cou'd make gentle Lyric reject its Lord?

In tasks so bold, this little Poem engages,

And in soft Prosody, queries what this Age is.

: :

My murderous lyrics equipped with the spirits before me
I mold the lyrics flowing like blood through the artery
Lace em with lyrics that's legendary, musical mercenary
Lyrically performing labotamy on your biology a prodigy
Lyrical attacka, heavyweight lyric never lost a calorie
Flow the placka instigate lyrics to backfile another MC
Fathering styles lyrically raised from death to infancy 
Have you experienced spirits in lyrics when you hear em
Yr lyrics are loaners return em to they rightful owners
Killing the first born daughter of lyrical Yul Brenners
One lyrical Schwarzenegger writing words like commander
Yo, I'm lyrically gone just letting the spirits live on 
Throughout all the lyrics that yu hear in all our songs
Lyrical arson rush - a million martians committin arson
Extraordinarily, I lyricize, see Ye olde lyrics of fire
Yo I got one lyric pointed at your head just as a start
My state-of-the-art lyrical lasers is (are) razor sharp
Cause as soon as I pic up the mic the lyrics just start
With the core of these explicit lyrics from the editor,
It goes 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-murder-1 lyrics at your door

Lyrics are flippin like Dominique Dawes with no drawers
Dope ki lyrical cascade height, SWATS type, mic soldier
Lyrics jotted on paper cause ya terror like the Creeper
Lyrical the kick make me ya mentor an X flex lyric seer
Well the lyrics of my peers have changed course here''s
[Korn appears here instrumentally only, not lyrically.]
Can't come back, lyrically I''m off scale, hype stealer
I got these lyrics waking up all their database spirits
More lyrical artillery than the armed forces, and mixin
And mixing up those lyrical faces - a lyrical lynch mob
From thot's bridge to hell's gate, lyrically detonating
Lyric utilizer, they remind you of bass I'm everlasting
So never twist it up that lyrically we even be thieving
Similar to this, what's the repertoire: kick deadly wit
Witness this, yo the pissed lyricist, bang like a Crip.
KnowhatI''msayin, there's this lyrical high, real quick
I can't get enough of it, the rough shit grenade lyrics
Allow me to place my own lyrical duchess in your bushes
Meetin lyrical wishes like swooshes the lyrical cleanse 
Lyrical cap pealer, the poetical, lyrical, miracle son.

Available in Print, PDF, or SQL at Troll Thread (2015).


Broadsides and poster exhibited in “Poetry will be made by all!” at LUMA/Westbau, January 30 – March 30, 2014.

Screenshot 2014-10-13 05.54.36

Draft Version 0.3 for Little Berlin Gallery, Philadelphia

Excerpts also performed at Hiding Place (Philadelphia, 2012) and MLA off-site reading (Chicago, 2013).

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