Mo money, or: Mo problems

An American sentence:

Four bank tellers sit, busy not serving customers with appointments.


What’s an ‘American Sentence’?

Allen Ginsberg, inventor of the American Sentence, felt that the haiku didn’t work as well in English. Ginsberg decided to remove the line structure of the haiku, maintaining the requirement of 17 syllables total. He felt that removing the line count freed the American Sentence up for the idiosyncrasies of English phonemes.

The requirements:

  1. Composed in one line;
  2. Syllabic, 17 syllables;
  3. Condensed, written with no unnecessary words or articles;
  4. Complete sentence or sentences;
  5. Includes a turn or enlightenment.


Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

22 thoughts on “Mo money, or: Mo problems”

  1. My grandmother often referred to money as ‘filthy lucre’ and wished she could get her hands dirty! It would be boring to sit at a bank and not have anything to do… with all the online banking and ATMs the tellers are at loose ends…

  2. I was a bank teller early in my working life. In my bank we served customers all day, but of course that was well before cash machines. If you are speaking of the (mostly) men in suits who are supposed to help you with other banking matters…(sigh) (k)

  3. That’s a great American Sentence

    But I’d like to understand the sadly true.
    Is it a slant at people-unfriendly banking sector
    Or is there a riddle hidden in the American haiku?

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