“Things to Try That Might Knock Out the Virus*” by Richard Prins

Richard Prins


1. Chug a carton of expired milk

2. Host a nationwide pillow-fight

3. Bail out the fossil fuel industry

4. Creepy accordion music

5. Ask to speak to the virus’s manager

6. Redeem a lifetime of earnest prayer for one (1) bad-ass miracle

7. Drunk-dial your ex

8. Knock your teeth out one by one and put them inside a maraca, then scare the virus away with your snazzy, impeccable rhythm

9. Crack a dodo bird egg and drink it raw

10. Wrap your body in tin foil, like a burrito

11. Wrap your body in dental floss, like a mummy

12. Smile more often, while flagellating yourself

13. Shave your head and boil all the hairs; serve with tomato sauce and parsley

14. Dose your pets with LSD and see if they think up an out-of-the-box solution

15. Huff some toothpaste

16. Have a staring contest with a taxidermied moose

17. There’s always spontaneous combustion

18. When all else fails, steal the virus’s identity, max out all its credit cards, then marry it so it can’t testify against you

19. Did you try turning yourself off and on again?

*The author doesn’t recommend any of these activities; he’s just wondering out loud if they might work and/or being sarcastic. Quoting him, in or out of context, shall be construed as proof of bias. The U.S. Surgeon General advises forgetting everything you just read.

from Poets Respond
April 26, 2020


Richard Prins: “This poem responds to the president’s recent news conference, where he suggested treating coronavirus by injecting disinfectant, and his administration’s subsequent efforts to spin his ludicrous suggestion.” (web)

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