I might be digging myself a hole here, but here goes.
On November 1st this year I gave my talk about the material in the book I self-published in 2014. After I scheduled the talk at the library, NAMI kindly stepped in and sponsored it. My daughter flew up from Atlanta to support me, and counted 25 in attendance. I gave them egg nog. Almost half those attending were friends, come to support me.
My book is actually quite good, and failed to be puchased widely because I was unable to push it. This morning I realized that my synonym for push is manipulate, and that’s something my father was good at.
Then it came to me that this is what capitalism is all about, manipulation. I don’t believe I manipulate, and am touchy when I suspect others might be trying to manipulate me. Oh I could dig down deeper and discover times when I may have unconsciously manipulated, but if so I apologize. These reflections led to the “poem” I published on my blog yesterday, and some of the feedback. I embarrassed myself by the stanza:
Poems mirror the mind, you know. What are the parts we’re willing to show?
Blood from a refugee’s eyeball
pooling on the floor at the mall?
I might have done better if I’d taken more time. But, still waking up this morning, I began to wonder who we write poems for. If we post them publicly on a blog, surely we write for others? After five years (omg, has it been five?) my readership is miniscule, which suggests that I don’t write for my readers. (Sorry).
Tho it sounds stuffy, I write from my own muse, who does a good job of comforting me. I guess I write for the echo. I recall my tidbit from the past: Here’s the thing: I’ve been talking through this loudspeaker I found in my crib 80 years ago and just now notice it’s not plugged in.
I realize a line might be drawn between therapy poetry groups and straight ones, but where does a blog fit in? And now I wonder what’s the difference between trying to make my point versus manipulating you, but at least I’m upfront about it.