common / Mackinac Poems

Chasing Wifi on Mackinac Island

Scott Carpenter

June 2011

I'm a new employee on the Island this year, a sophomore from Goucher College in Maryland, originally from Chicago. Like many of the college students spending their summer here, it's definitely taken some getting used to not having Internet access at my dormitory. One morning when I was headed back to my dorm after a fruitless search for Wi-Fi, I got the idea to write this poem. I did it purely for fun, but a friend suggested sending it in. If there is space, it would be fantastic to see this in a copy of the Town Crier.

Scott Carpenter

Chasing Wifi on Mackinac Island
By Scott Carpenter
Up in the morning at seven’s the rule,
As the others, still snoring, drool.
Out of the shower and into the mist,
Without so much as a glance at my wrist.
Now picture the air as thick as a fog,
Leaking sites, bites and internet blogs.
It was under the benches, in the horses’ hooves,
Skimming between the high tidal grooves,
The bicycle tire and down-buttoned jacket:
The town was alive (it made such a racket!).
That’s what I wanted, some wifi, is all.
But I couldn’t just grab it, no, dagnabbit.
I searched the motels, scoured the streets,
Nowhere was anywhere I could sit back, discrete.
The café was loud, the coffee joint too.
Besides, they all told me, shoo!
Just give me a chance, you selfish old town!
Or I’ll scream some certain one-word noun.
Anywhere, everywhere, I’d try any place.
I’ve never been any internet ace:
I’d sit outside, in the side-slanting rain,
Or the curb of the street, complete with pants stain,
Or the end of the wharf (the tip of the dock!)
Or on top of that old famous Arch Rock,
Just one thing’s missing in all these venues:
Some kind of access to an internet menu.
Serve me a platter, whatever, I’ll try it--
Just get me off of this gosh-darned diet! 
Scarcely subsisting on pieces of net,
I get on, day to day, but it’s no easy living, just yet.
I snatch what I can from Starbucks or Gree’s,
But hell, admission ain’t free.
So here I am, typing complaints,
“Gosh darn this island, these tight-bound restraints!”
But then I sit back and think,
 “Hey wait, I’ll just use some ink!”


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