Monthly Archives: April 2016

Poets Who Smile

I distrust

poets who smile,

writers for whom

the Muse and her

unruly children

face the world

like pop culture

versions of

art house hip

lifted from an

Ivory Soap

box.

 

Angst is

overrated,

it’s the drink

of the untutored

and inexperienced,

those of us grabbing

pablum gravitas in

an earnest quest

for artistic

vindication.

 

But poets

who smile,

their writings

full of well earned

art house history,

and circles of

other smiling poets,

collected during

years of doing art,

make me undeniably

uncomfortable;

they seem

too readily

to embrace

the appearance

of things,

instead of

dismantling

the illusion.

 

Appearances

are deceiving,

I tell myself

on a Sunday afternoon,

after looking

at pictures of

poets who smile,

wordsmiths seemingly

at ease

and skilled

in a world

I rarely

inhabit.

 

Meanwhile,

pages of metaphors,

strings of narrative,

drafts of rough memory,

and too many questions

shade the

spring sun

calling me

beyond.

 

 

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Brief update

I’ve been hunkered down with my main priorities, hence my silence.

I received an email from a blog follower asking if all was well.  Yes, it is.

Mostly.  Though I’ve been discouraged, and then some.

Also, the election has proved engaging, and it allows me to avoid diving into my story, skirting pain while engaging politics, and justifying that engagement.

Many of you already know that I’m a Clinton delegate to the Maine state convention.

I’d love to go to July’s DNC in Philadelphia, but I hear national conventions are for insiders.  That I represent Clinton in a Sanders state leaves me believing I may trump the odds, no allusion intended.

Much is being made of “identity politics” this election.  But as a writer from The Nation adroitly noted, “all politics is identity politics.”

Perhaps for this reason, Hillary’s election matters to me.

As I continue laying down sentence after sentence, I see my family and its matriarchal trajectory, and the utter economic, social, and emotional devastation wrecked on the lives of my grandmother, mother, and myself by what I’ll begrudgingly call the Patriarchy.

It’s a system that abuses men and women and the in-betweens.

Because I was born with a certain set of reproductive organs, I work harder, earn less, and have taken shit from institutions that would have otherwise rewarded brash tubes.

And I’ve done all this without a safety net, other than the ones given to me by the government, or that I’ve hobbled together, a day at a time.

It’s the system that serves the haves and excludes the have-nots, and wears the same face it has worn for thousands of years.

It’s no accident that the Revolution comes in the arms of another [white] male savior making huge promises.

No Revolution could be sold to the American public by a woman.

(Please see Jill Stein’s career, who most folks ignore.)

The so-called oligarchy is the patriarchy, and white men with big promises and bold vision are a dime a dozen in this system, because they are held to a different standard than women, a standard that gives them a pass at birth that those with fallopians aren’t issued, still.

It makes me sad, and then it makes me angry, because anger masks sadness.

So my story, my writing, and Hillary’s election, I have coalesced in my mind, for better or for worse.

I don’t know if it’s smart, but I have done so, and done so decisively.

There’s a meme on the internet that reads:

“Once upon a time, a wise woman said, ‘Fuck this shit’ and lived happily ever after.  The end.”

That.  This election.  Now.

And my life.

If Hillary can survive, so can I.

My story and herstory march on.

 

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