Billy was fascinated by the television. At its most basic level, it occupied his time and shut out the demons of isolation. This was another irony because, for so long, he had shunned the tube for a similar purpose-to prevent it from bombarding his brain with demons of banality. However, each time he turned the machine on, he began to discover a world of assorted delights, as well as gain insight into the insidious manner in which this medium was shaping the mass psyche. If nothing else, he learned there was nothing innocuous about it.
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Poetry can unleash a terrible fear. I suppose it is the fear of possibilities, too many possibilities, each with its own endless set of variations. It's like looking too closely and too long into a mirror; soon your features distort, then erupt. You look too closely into your poems, or listen too closely to them as they arrive in whispers, and the features inside you - call it heart, call it mind, call it soul - accelerate out of control. They distort and they erupt, and it is one strange pain. You realize, then, that you can't attempt breaking down too many barriers in too short a time, because there are as many horrors waiting to get in at you as there are parts of yourself pushing to break out, and with the same, or more, fevered determination.
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It was a dream, not a nightmare, a beautiful dream I could never imagine in a thousand nods. There was a girl next to me who wasn't beautiful until she smiled and I felt that smile come at me in heat waves following, soaking through my body and out my finger tips in shafts of color and I knew somewhere in the world, somewhere, that there was love for me.
If you are a parent, if you are an educator, there are very many good and powerful reasons to take children onto the Internet, but you have to be involved with them-you cannot expect government authorities or industry authorities or other people to do your job for you, and that is to help guard your children against some of these things that are occurring out there.
I love kids that come to shows, little kids coming up to you with braces; like, some kid came up to me in a parking lot outside a show in Santa Cruz - he was about 14 or 15 - and he said, 'Y'know, I love 'The Basketball Diaries,' but I hope your next book of poetry isn't gonna be as academic as 'Living at the Movies' was.'