Sunday, August 20, 2006

"I'm a poet. I want to be a poet. Can you help me be a poet?" Soppy Joe

Dear Soppy, Good Lord, what a non-existential soulful fool you are! Ah, glad we got that out of our system. Now coming to your problem and other problems. First of all, you've chosen to write, which is bad enough. Worse, you now want to be a poet. What the bejeebusjesufeesus is wrong with you? Understand this, poets make no money. Poets think being drunk or potted out or drunk and potted out is the only way to be. Poets wallow in self-pity. Poets spend all their time thinking of soulful things. Poets make no money. Oh, we already said that. Still, it's well worth repeating. Again. Poets make no money. And since poets spend all their time thinking, they find it impossible to make the money people can make by doing anything but thinking. God fucking knows what you are thinking? Whatever it is that you are thinking, it's very clear you aren't doing the right kind of thinking. Here's more dope of the right kind to get you unthinking. Poets become famous only after they die. That too, very rarely. Poets hardly get any sex, which is why they write about all these sombre things that overcome them because they get no sex. Furthermore, poets think they're better than writers. It's bad enough being a writer of poetry without thinking you are better than a writer of more useful forms of writing. Incidentally, writing in circles doesn't make you a poet. Nor does writing in straight lines. (In case you thought it was all about writing in shapes. It's not. It's more about form.) Just saying you are a poet and you want to be a poet and similar circular seemingly deep statements of the ambiguously vacuous same kind don't make you fit enough to be a poet of any kind. And what makes you think you are or can be a poet? Did some lovesick woman in her weakest moments tell you you were one? Be warned. If you believe what women say about your writing, you're in for a very short lifetime of long-drawn out penury. Women do not think rationally. They only like a kind of writing that will provide you with nothing in life. They will indulge all the heartfelt crap you pass off as powerful writing. They will try to prevent you from being a hack who writes for little more than money and turn you into a soulful poet who never writes for anything or anyone but himself. They will show you how to dream dreamy dreams of a life sans the pressures of kowtowing to corporate morons. They will suggest utopian options like becoming school-teacher in a idyllic hill-town. They will feed your idealistic brain with thoughts of working towards making the world a better place. Be very careful and very afraid of such big-hearted women. They will offer you a glimpse of a wonderful life that can be yours for the taking. They will also tell you that they will work very hard to make this life possible just for you. You will be tempted to give up being a well-paid hack and turn into a contented, creative, productive and writerly human being. It's a life very few are fortunate enough to manage. You want to be a poet? Good on you. Good fucking luck to you. Just make sure you find an intelligent, ambitious woman who can help you deal with the real world and let you not have to. That's all we have to say to you. Anything else you force yourself to do is destined to be an intellectually empty pursuit meant to do little more than add large sums of fucking money to your gloating bank balance. The choice is clear and only yours to make. Couple of more things, learn to write in visually pleasing line breaks and read with a hand-rolled cigarette of the doobie kind dangling from the corner of your mouth. Off you go. Yours for no rhyme of reason, Agony