Monday, January 27, 2014

Polishing the Pen

For Aspiring Poets

Reading poetry to learn how to write
is like teaching yourself to fuck
by watching porn.

You'll finger through pages of
faked orgasms
had by dead people
who jiggled their pens for money.

oh, fuck, c'mon Frost
take the road less traveled
c'mon, take it

walk through the fire
ooh, that hurts so good

You'll set down your book
and wrap your hand around
your ball-point pen,
which is almost dripping ink.

Stroke after stroke,
ink flying across
white paper,
you'll pump out a stanza,
take a twenty minute break,
and pump out another.

The next week,
you'll read your poem to
a girl who makes a few
"hmm"s and then
wants to watch TV.

So, you'll start the process
over again
ducking into public libraries
and looking for new poets
to undress.

You'll want to quit,
but you can't stop dreaming
about Dickinson's slender
dashes and Sexton's sexy

You'll realize that dead poets
live inside your head,
telling you to write and become
one of them.

You're afraid of death
and being forgotten,
so you'll continue to write,
hoping some future poet
will hate you when you're dead.

by Jeremy Ball
in Volume 2 Issue 2

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