Guide: Modern Mime Routines

by: Andrew Halter

1. Piloting a Remote Control Helicopter

This is one of the more subtle uses of mime technique, in which the performer holds his hands parallel to each other, roughly 2-3 feet apart, scanning the sky for an invisible flying machine.  One can also open his or her mouth in amazement and excitement, occasionally becoming concerned that the imaginary helicopter will crash, only to be relieved when it does not.

2. Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Waving Tube Man

The Mime splays his or her arms wide, holding them rigid and unmoving, only to suddenly reverse directions suddenly.  The mime’s face should be completely without expression, suggesting the personification of an inanimate object.  If any small children are near, the mime could suddenly throw his arms toward them, hoping not to make them burst into tears.

3. Suicide

The mime should first pretend to sit at a desk and write a confessional note, making sure to emphasize with his or her finger the tears running down their cheek.  Then, standing up, the mime can slip an invisible noose over their neck, throwing the other end of the rope over an imagined overhead pipe. With hands clasped together in front of them, the mime could weep briefly into their own folded hands, before pretending to dangle lifeless from their own imagined suicidal rig.  Possibility: suddenly spring to life, grinning widely and ensuring any audience that it was all a ruse.

4. Mass Shooting

This act requires at least 15 mimes, as one will portray the shooter and the others his or her unfortunate victims.  All the mimes should begin together in one group, until one of them upholds an imaginary machine gun and begins to murder many of the other mimes.  There should be at least 10 imaginary casualties, with the shooter making sure to shudder his or her body rapidly as if jostled by machine gun fire.

5. Donald Trump Speech

The mime stands as if before a podium, making sure to indicate with hand motions that he or she is enormously overweight.  The mime could gesticulate wildly with his or her hands while occasionally standing openhanded as if asking the crowd a question.  Depending on what part of the country the mime performs this routine, it may end with a final triumphant Nazi salute.

Guide: Modern Mime Routines

Poem: History

Motherfucking cocksuckers on a rusty rocket plunger

up their asses, idiots and moral making laboratory rat

scrabble under the floorboards, the bosses know that

they’ve no heart left, for anyone but a pane of glass,

curved brightly magnanimous, wolves are surrounding

in my head, but I can still crack it with a smile.


First stop watching the world erupt, slow movement

as no moment, is or ever was, escape into angst

captured comedy, filing papers filed with lying lives

filling misogyny hegemony, trapped in a corner

lashing out at the roots, pointless paper trails

infinitely manacled, but pop a can with your feet up.

Poem: History

Poem: Big Shot

The king used to be a big shot

back in the days of protestants and shady deals, he was a perfect piñata,

a pincushion political prisoner, raised on a pike

in the village square for all to see, fretting out the frustration

sickness of the whole world, like Jesus laying

under a boulder,

flat like a pancake so no one could even hear

the WORD, and we don’t even know

what it would be.


Kings are of the past, though

everyone knows that the human

strives for servitude, he or she yearns for the open

air out loud, but staring at it is crippling

chaos twofold, or three or four, we can’t keep

count of our allies and enemies, breeding like mice

poison the well water with feces, take it all down

to the ground maggot paste,

listening to political jabber jaw radios has taught me capital letters

are POINTLESS, and the only time

is right here now.

Poem: Big Shot

Really, No Comment 3

To rest among corpses fits, logically when it’s considered

through a Dickens lens, for we’re all dead anyway

especially now, finding life in the grit

smirking and chuckling like a reflex reaction,

ungirded with intent to punish and judge

worthy those that claimed a place, leaving non grata

bygone brothers and sisters, pitiable portions

of the landscape, we are born again

in a bizarro centerpiece, let the chips fall

for they may crush, and that’s what we want.

Really, No Comment 3

Poem: Arise

We can’t be the stupid people anymore, doing what couldn’t

and shouldn’t be done, disciples line behind my back

to show those big shots what’s what, you must know that they speak lies

but I never will, and everything will be buttercream in the future

with turbo and badass rock guitar, Jesus is gonna come

burning satan’s dumb pawns, because our lack of faith

brought vengeance christ, extracting his price

with an apocalypse, of which I am harbinger

arbiter in a breath, signaling and leading the line two

up a lighting street, trombones and baritones

blare arrhythm joy, concluding in rouse

until days later, the landscape is naught.


Burned barns are all over the place, downtown are the wicked

brokers and lenders, way downtown till they’re

non grata to everyone, even those in tatters

becoming more numerous, by the day they strike out

blaring with fire and dazzle, feathers on their hats

shine hope out their eyes, but their judgment comes

on a turn rolled card, ending up in the pokey

or an office chain gang, made and born to fall

in line and keep a low voice, dormant till the next

time an ignition sparks, and fire is every thing

when all are things aflame, so leave them be

because we are all dead, but think our corpses

will nourish the soil in eons, for though all childless

and alone bodies now, we were the true shepherds.

Poem: Arise