Saturday, August 3, 2013

Day 209 of the 365 Days of Blogging

The author, Dane F. Baylis


Sliding along with the poets of ASKEW POETRY JOURNAL, ISSUE #14, I'd like to offer you Geoffrey Jacques. Tight, concise, and with a wonderful gift for building the picture, a layer at a time. Each object is where it belongs, yet nothing is concrete enough to offer you the comfort of anchorage. With no further intro:

Geoffrey Jacques
Photo by D.F. Baylis

                                                    I don't quite know what I'm doing
                                              night sounds whoosh and whimper
                                              Coleman Hawkins humming the moon
                                              a lover anointed with plums
                                              seasonal plaster & dirt draping each object like a cool
                                              here a chair there a ratty couch
                                              a fine carpet an altar to the slaughtered path
                                              ---each mite gathering in every corner
                                              the melody drifting away over rooftops


This long after the sexual revolution. This far past the tune in, turn on, drop out generation. This many years into the post modernist confusion born of the rebellion that wasn't (or at least that self-immolated for no cause other than the lure of consumer ethos). I was thinking... It's time to knock off the insipid need to use the poetic stage to purge our daddy complexes, lay bare our disappointment at not being picked for the popular kids team, or to thrash that former mate who left us because we just didn't get it. It's time to move on to writing poetry that isn't about us ALL the friggin' time.
No, I am not targeting the entire poetic community. I'm not even practicing shotgun non-selectivity. I'm talking about the people who are still so butt-hurt that they have to stand in front of an audience and weep uncontrollably at the discovery that none of us have any control over the vast majority of crap we encounter, but most of us have found a way to live with that tiny bit of reality. You want to write about gender inequities, or sexual identity paradoxes, or the fact your mom just really liked your brother, sister, Uncle Jerry, or the members of the local motorcycle club better than you, be my guest. Just do us all a favor and don't have a personal hissy fit over the damn fact that the world doesn't give a shit about you, me, or the stray cat who knocked up your prize Siamese.
Look around you and realize that there are probably...Oh, a couple of million people, locally, who have it worse than you. Write about their grief, their pain, their personal pissing match with God, the universe, and the Department of Power and Water. Show us you have found an appreciation for how they have made peace in their souls with their demons. Or at least a relief that they've made it through to sunrise without actually pulling the damned trigger. Get off your own tiny little pity pot and do that one miniscule thing in the pantheon of those choices you have in the literary arts and I will bow low and adore you, even if you can't differentiate simile from onomatopoeia, personification from alliteration, or blank from free verse.
Quit hanging every inconsequential bastard you've had intimacies with by his or her genitalia and get on with showing me the damned scene and symbol that makes me understand that it was just life and even when it sucked it was good because it taught you to feel these things and write them down. Take just one small moment to help me hear the emotions sing instead of whimpering at the entire world like a spoiled toddler deprived of satisfaction for a raving case of the gimme's!
If you aren't capable of getting out of your own way and leaving that wailing little prick, Ego, at home while you're attempting an artistic night out, then just don't. Don't read it, or defend it, or pass it around like an STD - or ask for the input you already know you're going to ignore anyway. Damn it all, Sylvia Plath barely pulled it off and it didn't save her! But she HONESTLY ploughed a mile of emotional crap to reveal the bleeding remains of her heart. If all you want to do is whine...DON'T! Self-crucifixion is impossible and there is no sympathy for those types of wounds. Admiration is reserved for the dumb bastards that don't know when to stay down!
Just a helpful hint from your Uncle Dane.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------, love, write. (I mean it. Really.)
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Dane F. Baylis

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