Can’t we just Read SparkNotes?
Updated: Sep 19, 2022
By Matthew McGuirk
They ask me, “Can’t we just read SparkNotes?”
I think to myself,
it’s like cutting Shakespeare’s tongue out
reading an encyclopedia entry on whale hunting, rather than
having the waves lash at the keels of the boat.
“I can tell you what happens in the movie, isn’t it just the same?”
You’ll miss the intensity in DeNiro’s face,
wondering how they made that blood look so real
or knowing they’ll probably make it, but not quite sure how
and will Morgan Freeman’s voice ever get old
or will he be narrating every film for me from here on out
in that steady, welcoming cadence?
“Why not just look at the box score?”
What about seeing the eyes peek out from behind the glove
working through a bases loaded jam
or the smell of hot dogs coming down the aisle
or how popcorn goes flying when one gets knocked out of the park?
What about the stable of people, a herd of voices
even when the action is quiet?
“Why go to the Caribbean when you can look at pictures?”
The flapping photo is the same as the sea breeze, isn’t it?
Is the reflection of the setting sun on the water painted with the same watercolors?
Do those fresh picked fruits, drip juices across the table
permeating the photo in sweetness.
They ask me, “can’t we just read SparkNotes?”
I tell them, the best things
take a little time.
Matt McGuirk teaches and lives with his family in New Hampshire. BOTN 2021 nominee and regular contributor for Fevers of the Mind with words in 50+ lit mags, 100+ accepted pieces and a debut collection with Alien Buddha Press called Daydreams, Obsessions, Realities on Amazon. http://linktr.ee/McGuirkMatthew Twitter: @McguirkMatthew Instagram: @mcguirk_matthew.