I don’t write poems anymore. I used to write an epic poem on occasion, as an act of artistic intent. The Stumblefish album contains 2 or 3 long, psychedelic garbage poems. I have written many poems. But I don’t sit down to write poems anymore. It’s never a goal, or an end in itself. The poem has become the means to the end, the road leading home. Poetry has become a transient event for me.
I don’t live in the poem anymore, in the same way I no longer live in the car, or the van. I don’t inhabit the vehicle. I ride it toward the destination.
Whether poetry is a language device that has been elevated to an art form, or an art form that has been reduced to a language device, I do not know.
It’s both, of course. But there is a reason I have gone from intentionally writing numerous long poems about big events to accidentally writing short ones about small ones, and I’m having a hard time explaining it.
Suffice it to say, this isn’t Dante’s Inferno, Paradise Lost, or even Bukowski. It’s a cheap bag of magic marbles, a tiara from the thrift store, a lucky find on the sidewalk, seen from the corner of your eye at the last minute.
I don’t write poems anymore, I use them to pass the time. If they don’t turn into songs, I sprinkle them like confetti on my dreams, or arsenic in my coffee, as the case may be. Here are a few that escaped my brain from Mexico.
From the Preface of Sketches From Mexico, available as an eBook for 99 centavos americanos.
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