Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My literary opinion and poetry with bad words

I felt it was time to address something extremely important to me: the freedom to write what moves you - the real you - not censored propaganda for public consumption. I did it for years, you know, writing for newspapers. The things that get left out - that's the heart of the real news. That is what is chopped from the story, that is where the art is. And I am all about the art. I have felt the sting of censure as a young and giddy reporter, telling the entire truth and paying for it. The gleaming kernel of fact removed by an adroit editor felt like an amputation. It hated it. Writing the news sucks ass.

That is why I love to write poetry. Because to me, poetry is all about the feeling: the feeling of words formed and written first on brain, the roll of the tongue, the weight of pen in hand, the exact pressure of finger on keyboard. My poetry is not usually kind or sweet. Tho I love to read sweet lolly poetry from other people (Yeats comes to mind, with his bean-rows on the Lake Isle of Innisfree) I am loathe to write that way.

I am a poet of guttural hatred and unbridled fury. I write about what pisses me off, depresses me, makes me withdraw from society. Sometimes it's all happiness. Wait, no, that never happens. The verbal vomiting is my way of soul-purging. I can write terrible things so I don't have to DO terrible things. This is what art is, yes? I have a feeling I'll never receive accolades while I am still breathing. But that's okay. Someday someone will study me and think wow, she was really pissed off.

Here's the thing: It takes incredible courage and moxy to say what you really mean in poetry just like it does in real life. While I am never one to shy away from confrontation, I have been guilted into keeping my trap capped for fear of alienating my audience. The thought of losing those of you that read my blog scares me, but being artistically dishonest scares me more.

In college I had many, many poetry writing seminar classes. I think these classes suck and if I ever taught poetry writing, I would not ever approach it in the way it was taught to me. Apologies to my previous teachers. Oh wait, no, I meant to say suck it. The writing of the rosy lines, the xeroxing of the many pages, then the ultimate betrayal: sharing your rough cut diamond in a 'peer group' setting. Fuck the peer group. What the hell do they know that you don't?

I remember a particular session with a particular peer group. Of course my poem was 'about' watching my ex-husband sleep (we were still married at the time) and wanting to murder him. One of my peers read some hippy-esque dream of Pablo Neruda making love to her, another poet shared a tale of swimming in Lake Michigan and being in tune with nature. And so on and so on and then there was, to me, the worst of the worst: A rosy-cheeked teaching major reading her poem 'about' apple picking with her rosy-cheeked family and the ensuing pie making, etc. I wanted to slit her wrists for her. And I said that. Out loud. Because that's the way I rolled back then.

I try not to roll over someone else's work these days; I am largely supportive of anyone writing anywhere at any time. This shit is hard!!!! Writing is soul-wrenching, hair pulling agony! Or it is easy as apple picking and pie baking. But I digress. The purpose of this post is to share, honestly, a poem I wrote a few days ago because it is the way I felt at that moment in time. It has lots of bad words. It is not 'about' you, or you. It is not in any way real, or something that ever will or ever did happen. Because it is a poem. With bad words. Because that's the kind of poet I am, more often than not. And poems aren't right or wrong per say, but they can have a right or wrong audience. So I am feeling you out.

Fuck You Michelle

Fuck you
and fuck me
and fuck the world.
I will fuck you up,
murder your children
knife your grandma
fuck your grandpa
then stab out his eyes
with a stainless steel fork.

I will rape your husband,
slice your belly,
shatter every window in
your windowless house
you bitch.

I'd fuck the moon
if it pissed you off
then slit its throat and laugh
as burble-bubble-grunt-and-moan
moon beams spill
from dead neck hole
a milky silver pussy death.

Fuck you all
but fuck you the most.
I fucking hate you.
Mahalo for listening! ~Amy

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