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November 20, 2021

There I Was

at a party, there I was
I was accused of bragging about being a poet

who brags about being a poet?

poets have imagination

and a special way of using words

behind dark glasses we take it all in

I think poets do their best work when they are unknown

sleeping in cold flats, eating beans and hot dogs on a good day

once they get some recognition

they become caricatures of themselves

often times becoming pseudo-intellectuals

who pretend they're more in tune with the world than they really are…

unconsciously self-conscious and no longer free

but there I was

at the party, seeing people not seeing people

miners in search of gold but looking in all the wrong places

but there I was

green around the gills and empty in the pocket

I was used to it////doing the art and poetry thing

better than earning wages

crash here, crash there, sometimes sleeping in the fresh air

but there I was

remaining pure and anonymous 

living day to day - hand to mouth

once you taste success you lose that purity 

could be overnight or a gradual drip 

you go from being robert mitchum in his prime

to old robert mitchum trying to act like robert mitchum 

it’s all changes, it’s never the same again

there isn’t any going back

it’s automatic pilot, speak by rote, color by number

some don’t but most do

maintain that purity - don’t sell out - stay anonymous