THE BIZNIZ OF POETRY

Poetry is what happens in the cracks, the empty spaces, the margins along paper’s rim, bar chits, and bills not yet paid, void if detached. The recycled paper bin is the wellhead of new thought. Poetry is what comes out when the brain is unwinding, disengaged, coasting downhill after a long night of tossing and turning. The early morning hours are fertile ground for plowing, fallow fields for planting. Poetry is a job where you gotta’ be on call. If you can’t write in the dark, then you don’t get the job. Poetry is what happens between acts, entertainment that truly holds you between. We’re competing with jugglers and clowns; we’re not competing with scientists and philosophers. A word is worth a thousand pictures. Writing is like gene-splicing, re-shuffling the codons. The most innocent mutations can lead to entirely new species. I mine my memories to see if there’s something I forgot, cross-reference myself to find out where I stand, second-guess myself as to where I’ll likely end up. Writing is like sex; I try different positions to make it come out fast and hard, in light hot licks.

Advertisements