Toomey, Robert G., 1928-2005 / Family reunion: reflections carved in sand and stone
So help me Sylvia Plath, Billy Collins and Joyce Carol Oates!, pp. 32-33
So HELP ME SYLVIA PLATH, BILLY COLLINS AND JOYCE CAROL OATES! The poor saps! The poets already scorned by their neighbors, And nearest next-of-kin and our nation of auctioneers, No-goodniks and ne-er do-wells, or bets or bests Are even now being victimized by their own kind- Fooled, fleeced, flummoxed, undone by the very ones You'd think would have pity at least If not compassion for their suffering brothers and sisters Who sweat and slave, bodies aching, minds run dry, For hours and days, over a blank cold page In their desperate daily quest And epic efforts for an inspiration, a fix To sustain them during their dark cold nights Sleepless in Madison and/or Milwaukee, Sweating, cursing, boo-hooing They'd give up everything-even their jobs- Their all, even money, for a verse Be it a simple lyric with riming quatrains, Or something, anything, free, unmetered, unrimed Or even doggerel occasioned by a fancy flight To the moon on gossamer wings (rimes with "things") To be betrayed by their friends, the very ones Who promote these charades At the Iowa and Milwaukee creative writing establishments- Schools that grant degrees, certificates, and sometimes Even help you get a paying job repeating What you've learned and passing it on by promises Of prizes and other tokens of success. The laurel leaf, a lure dangled under your nose Now gone bad and discarded, once spurred By money and promises of the fame game Accompanied by publication in the journals And so much more.
Copyright 2006 by the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System. All rights reserved.| For information on re-use see: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright