Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Jack johnson - Enemy
I'm getting ready to go for a walk with my mom. The sun is rising in the east and the mountains here are cool and low. Hawks fly over the neighborhood.
I woke up thinking about people I had previously thought of as my enemies, and though I still believe self-interest is the prevading force behind much of the action they send forth into the universe, I realized at some point there's not a lot I can do about it. If they are going to bask in publicity but not have their work be up to par, I have to have faith in the art itself. And maybe their art is good and kind for the universe. I don't know. But again, there's nothing that can be done beyond writing my own poems with care, and in the end it takes longer and is often more lonely and painful than basking in what one guy called "glory". Yeah. I didn't understand what he meant when he said all poets want glory, but I guess we foolishly do? We must fight that desire! I miss writing for the sheer pleasure of it and not worrying about such things. I want to continue writing for the sake of creating and get to that place of trance and transition and transformation.
I am plagued by insecurity and in watching their boldness on sites like Poetry foundation and Poetry Society of America yet I have to have faith in the work itself, not in the sole force of social networking and "friendship". I was jealous and then Poetry Foundation featured a poem of mine too. I am learning that maybe through time people find and appreciate my work despite unyeilding efforts of others to promote their "friends". Fact of the matter is we all like our friends' work?
I did not go to Iowa, Columbia or Brown and am slowly learning to appreciate that fact. It makes the work I've done mine and the universe's; it makes one humble to a degree, really humble; there is no debt to an institution. I think a certain degree of anonymity is good for a poet/artist/writer. I need to embrace the anonymity and understand that websites like Poetry Society of America and institutions like Brown, Columbia, Notre Dame or Yale or Harvard are not the end all of poetry nor the beginning of it. They simply exist like economic classes and such separations fade with time.
I want my writing to bring a little bit of pleasure to others. I once wanted to write for the people of El Paso. I don't know where I'm going, but I do know and suspect with time all of these things work themselves out. We live the small details and walk in the sunrise knowing the only thing we can be certain of is change. I wanted to write for the border, to share some sense of the border and its music.
Someone said he wouldn't buy my book because of my honesty here on the blog. But the fact is truth outweighs falseness in the end? The universe is largely unjust? Some feel everything happens for a reason. I don't know. I just know I have to get back to writing if I am to survive psychologically, physically and emotionally. Not survive, but thrive.
In the end, all we have as artists is the work which we do and the work which we enjoy. I suspect all the networking in the world can't help a flat poem, and I don't know if I can write anymore, but I will try soon. I can't let the clamour of po-biz and falsely clanging cymbals about community and "friendship" continue to distract me. If the work is mediocre, that's all that will prevail despite having interviews and so forth at Poetry Society of America, despite having connections like Iowa or Brown. I'll hang in there and hopefully go back into the act of writing for the sake of writing. I need to. Otherwise, all is in vain. I know I didn't go to a top notch writing program, but I suspect I could have. I'm glad I went to UTEP because I was immersed in El Paso's wonderful culture for three years. I belonged there I think. El Paso will always be close to my heart and part of my early work, but I am moving on now to some new things.
Posted by Sheryl at 7:54 AM