Portland Poetry Slam – "Choose Your Own Adventure" (NPS 2014)



choose-your-own-adventure volume 23 the Crimson dragons of Auckland you are in a dark room you smell something sinister do you hae like your lantern be keep quiet in the dark shoes usual hey you like your lantern a dragon sees you and eats your face you have done no no no way I kept my finger on the page I choose B you chose B you keep quiet in the dark you feel your way to an ominous closed door do you a hide under your cloak B open the door choose your chose B you open the door a dragon leaps out and eats your face you have died damn it I want to start over hey you hide under your cloak and now you are getting really hungry do you hey get out of bed need a goddamn egg B stay in bed and play Neopets on your phone your mother calls do you eh answer the phone B ignore her and watch 8 episodes of full house everywhere you look you are still hungry do you hae get try to put some clothes on to go to brunch B text your friends and tell them you are too sick for the brunch the right hears you and eats your face you have died keep your thumb on the page you are tired do you clean your kitchen floor look for a job on Craigslist call your mother back for God's sake pursue your life's passion for 30 years with no guarantee anything will ever come of it choose a dragon jumps out of your fridge your job interview is with a dragon your mother your mother just married her third dragon dragons are better writers than you what are you doing sooner or later the book will get too heavy you will run out of fingers for all the pages you wish you could choose again every morning starts with a dark room and an ominous door and there is no such thing as choosing doing nothing is choosing to do nothing you don't ever get to start over this story only has one ending it is the one where your body is no longer there and all that is left of you is what you did while the book was still open there is no creature more terrifying than the one in the room while you are alone or not fighting it is not an option but dragon is still coming you can hide under your bed and there will be a dragon under your bed you can run for the hills and the dragon will be in the hills you are the dragon something huge and powerful and impossible to tame weight eating your own face you can set the world on fire all you have to do is breathe

39 thoughts on “Portland Poetry Slam – "Choose Your Own Adventure" (NPS 2014)

  1. I am a teacher who has paired this poem with Life of Pi a few times. I just typed up the words, so my students could follow along more easily. I thought someone else might benefit from the work:

    Choose Your Own Adventure
    Volume 23: The Crimson Dragons of Oakland

    You are in a dark room.
    You smell something sinister.
    Do you:
    a) Light your lantern
    b) Keep quiet in the dark

    Choose.

    You chose “a.”
    A dragon sees you and eats your face.
    You have died.

    No. No. No. Wait.
    I kept my finger on the page.
    I choose “b.”

    You chose “b.”
    You keep quiet in the dark.
    You feel your way to an ominous closed-door.
    Do you:
    a) Hide under your cloak
    b) Open the door

    Choose.

    You chose “b.”
    You open the door.
    A dragon leaps out and eats your face.
    You have died.

    Damnit.
    I want to start over.

    A.

    You hide under your cloak
    And now you are getting really hungry.
    Do you:
    a) Get out of bed and eat a goddamn egg
    b) Stay in bed and play Neopets on your phone

    Your mother calls.
    Do you:
    a) Answer the phone
    b) Ignore her and watch 8 episodes of Full House
    Everywhere you look

    You are still hungry.
    Do you:
    a) Try to put some clothes on to go to brunch
    b) Text your friends and tell them you are too sick for the brunch

    The dragon hears you and eats your face.
    You have died.

    Keep your thumb on the page.
    You are tired.
    Do you:
    Clean your kitchen floor
    Look for a job on craigslist
    Call your mother back for God’s sake
    Pursue your life’s passion for 30 years with no guarantee anything will ever come of it

    Choose.

    A dragon jumps out of your fridge.
    Your job interview is with a dragon.
    Your mother. Your mother just married her third dragon.
    Dragons are better writers than you.

    What are you doing?!

    Sooner or later, the book will get too heavy.
    You will run out of fingers for all the pages you wish you could choose again.
    Every morning starts with a dark room and an ominous door
    And there is no such thing as not choosing.

    Doing nothing is choosing to do nothing.
    You don’t ever get to start over.
    This story only has one ending.
    It is the one where your body is no longer there
    And that is left of you is what you did while the book was still open.

    There is no creature more terrifying than the one in the room while you are alone.
    But not fighting it is not an option. The dragon is still coming.

    You can hind under your bed
    And there will be a dragon under your bed.
    You can run for the hills
    And the dragon will be in the hills.

    You are the dragon.
    Something huge and powerful and impossible to tame
    Quit eating your own face.

    You can set the world on fire.
    All you have to do is breathe.

  2. This. This is the poem that made me fall in love with slam poetry.

  3. "You will run out of fingers for all the pages you wish you could choose again." I always start crying at this line, because… damn, it's so true.
    Also, I love choose your own adventure stories, so this poem is one of my absolute favorites.

  4. this reminds me of the episode of spongebob where patrick thinks he is the criminal and keeps telling him the criminal is where ever spongebob is. goes into the mailbox SPONGEBOB HE IS IN THE MAILBOX 😂😂

  5. Is this the best poem I've heard in a long time? Yes it is. :')

  6. That was really freakin' amazing.
    It really resonates with me.

  7. The comment on being your own dragon is very Richard Siken. Love it!

  8. "There's no creature more terrifying than the one in the room while you are alone." It's 12 AM and I'm scared out of my mind

  9. This is an amazing piece! Does anyone happen to know where I can find a transcript? 🙂

  10. "Quit eating your own face." I laughed way too hard at this line.

  11. This was too powerful. I teared up when they made it known you are the dragon.

  12. I loved how original this piece was and it wasn't about one of the more popular slam poem topics. Well-planned and well delivered.

  13. What I liked about your poem was that all of you were so enthusiastic about how you showed your emotions.

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