Dear Poet – A Poem

Note: I’m writing this in contemplation of my insecurities over my writing–I am okay (but not perfect) in terms of craft, while I find myself dissatisfied with my subject matter (when compared to poems that resonate with a lot of people).

Thankfully, there are pieces like this one by Lindsay Merbaum. These give me hope. (You can find Lindsay’s written work on her website.)

I also came across poems like “Audio book” by Neil Hilborn, which basically made me reconsider my angst over not having “sexy” material like poverty and social injustice (incidentally, all things my mother and maternal grandmother lived through with aplomb–how I envied their legitimate tragedies while I was growing up!) for my poems.

So I guess my point is…we are all scared and insecure and struggling to find our voices. We are all afraid of not being heard because we’re not as interesting as other poets, writers, or people. But we are still worth listening to–even if we’re the only ones listening.

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Dear Poet

You still insist on deserts and glaciers and thunderstorms,
as if profundity is a great white whale to be sliced
into perfumed portions;
at nights I hear you cry out as it dies out as you
harvest raw fatty slivers —
tongues you wish you had.

But, my poet,
you mistake isolation for contemplation and
forget to listen for quiet love songs between stars;
mistake mystery for depth,
forgetting to burrow for meaning in the light of subterranean worms;
mistake fury for all passion and
forget to watch a child’s first waltz with the rain.

Can’t you remember?
Words are as much silence as they are sound.

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