david budbill | be glad

13 03 2008

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Poetry Dispatch No. 217 | March 13, 2008

Choose Your ‘Celebrity’
(From Blei’s annals of The Writing Life …about Chapter ?…no particular order, and still counting…) by Norbert Blei

Once committed to the writing life, at whatever age, you assume, right or wrong … you’re on the road to achieve some measure of recognition which, if you buy into or put a down payment on the “Complete American Dream Package,” sooner or later (in your mind) your life has to add up to money-fame-power…something! So the story goes.

But there’s truth. And there’s fiction.

So the odyssey continues. Most of the time, not exactly what you expected. After years in pursuit, hardly anyone knows your name. Let alone just what the hell you’re after (including you). Parents, family, friends, spouse, strangers are tired of asking when?; tired of `advising’ (you’re tired of hearing) “Go get a job,” while you’re still trudging the dream road, waiting for something to happen, and hopefully to cash in on. But as more time passes, which Time indeed does, you check the map (all a blur), put on your middle-age, Dollar Store cheater-glasses, only to discover the road-less-traveled is a dead-end (which is why it’s less-traveled), no matter what you may have imagined or sought along the way. Furthermore, you’re running of time, out of patience, out of imagination, out of everything, stuck in the middle of nowhere with nothing but a broken-chair-life to show for your efforts. It was a dream?

Then again…you coulda been a contender…

Then again, would you rather be Britney Spears? Eliot Spitzer? Margaret Seltzer (aka Margaret B. Jones) author of LOVE & CONSEQUENCES , another writer caught ‘making it’, publishing yet another bullshit memoir—20,000 copies turned to pulp, an advance of mucho thousands of bucks returned…and your name spelled M U D for life, on all the well-traveled, consequential roads?

Or would you rather….

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Be Glad by David Budbill

Why become wise
when you can be stupid?
Why become sophisticated
when you can be simple and original?
If you are artless and ordinary.
the literati, who recognize only
artifice and self-consciousness.
will ignore you.
Be glad with just a cup of tea,
a bird song,
a small book of plain poems,
and your anonymity.

from MOMENT TO MOMENT, Poems of a Mountain Recluse, Copper Canyon Press, $14]

please visit David Budbill’s page here…

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