Gizmobation: A state of constantly playing around on your cell phone; bouncing without pause from website to website then into Facebook to start skipping chronically from social justice post to political slander post to the comments on a Friend’s post (albeit one of those contemporary-world Friends – a “Friend” you’ve neither touched nor heard the voice of) about her discovering Robert Guinan, her post showing one of his paintings (and now you’re discovering him right here and now) and the painting’s atmosphere beckons a feel you instantly self-believe to be all wit-like and so you speedily thumb-type it out to her for all your contemporary-world Friends to Like – Motley Algren – before instantly forgetting both the feel and the anticipation for that feel’s potential Likes to move on to a video of humans saving a shark on a beach you wish you were reclining upon with a cocktail in hand and no worries hanging over you, and this vision now gets intermingled with playing Blendoku and filling your queue on NetFlix while guessing at your truth via your Tinder profile [because your kind lives (mutates?) more and more through devices, moves (mutates?) more and more away from the cursive of language]—and all this while in the back of your mind you’re bitching at people for staring at their texts while behind the wheel, bitching at this without possessing the objectivity to realize you are yourself unable to keep yourself from bringing your own eyes off the road when the Opener notification sounds off on your cell, and while somewhere adjacent in the back of your mind you’re trying to get back to that novel to read another snippet you’ll probably never retain as you’ll no doubt be doing your reading while flipping back and forth between baseball and HBO and sarcastic newscasters reciting things of no consequence to tomorrow, much less to next month or to America’s ever-growing fear of the other and of intelligence. … Gizmobation is a term I’ve found suiting to express an aspect of the Post-truth, Reality TV human condition wherein the activity of spastic multitasking has come into greater de-cerebral play, and has with little doubt made it increasingly harder for the human mind to focus and remain fully present in the moment. It is a term by which I mean to express how the art of poetry is in increasing jeopardy because the intense experience of poetry to the reader (who I contend is the real artist involved in poetry, not the poet) resides exactly in “the moment.” It is a term by which I mean to convey my fear that our future will only produce more focus-less multitaskers, more people who talk over people, more non-listeners – less and less poetry readers; less and less true poets, yet somehow more and more and more and more writers of poems.

~John Hospodka


Gizmobation has thus far been used in the following episodes:

Episode 8: “To a T”

Episode 25: A Conveniently Self-Satisfying Manifesto

Episode 33: The Short and Curlies of the Work

Episode 35: “The Day Is A Poem (November 9, 2016”

Episode 44: “Total Sum of Less than Zero”

Episode 46: Acid Casualty (or, Ordering at Skylark)

Episode 49: A Cube with a View