Welcome to another Writer’s quote/poem Wednesday, where I share a quote and poem from some of the amazing writers I have come across through reading and listening to poetry. Today’s choice poet is Marge Piercy. High five if you have come across her works before. The poem I chose to share today is one I will recommend to my fellow writers. If you’ve ever been told writing is not a real job, and you should quit it and join the employment pool, then this poem is for you.
For the young who want to- Marge Piercy
Talent is what they say
you have after the novel
is published and favorably
reviewed. Beforehand what
you have is a tedious
delusion, a hobby like knitting.
Work is what you have done
after the play is produced
and the audience claps.
Before that friends keep asking
when you are planning to go
out and get a job.
Genius is what they know you
had after the third volume
of remarkable poems. Earlier
they accuse you of withdrawing,
ask why you don’t have a baby,
call you a bum.
The reason people want M.F.A.’s,
take workshops with fancy names
when all you can really
learn is a few techniques,
typing instructions and some-
body else’s mannerisms
is that every artist lacks
a license to hang on the wall
like your optician, your vet
proving you may be a clumsy sadist
whose fillings fall into the stew
but you’re certified a dentist.
The real writer is one
who really writes. Talent
is an invention like phlogiston
after the fact of fire.
Work is its own cure. You have to
like it better than being loved.
He moved halfway across the world,
To ease a dullness in his chest;
A yearning, in every cell of his bone,
Staying home, could not suppress.
The moment, he grew up into the ranks
of men, he packed and left.
Leaving folks back home, going grey wondering,
What insanity provoked such an act.
But some souls are born to wander
The wilderness, and the far out sea;
Soak in rays at the top of a mountain,
Live amidst-nature’s beasts.
Gain knowledge only experience can offer,
Fill their lungs with nature’s breeze;
For the only way, for them to figure out,
Who they are- is by breaking free.
prompt: Inspired by (DecemberPoetryChallenge). Today’s poem is inspired by a quote of Chinua Achebe– “Nobody can teach me who I am. You can describe parts of me, but who I am, what I need, is something I have to find out for myself”.
the above image is courtesy of Tylerised.wordpress.com
I once met a girl on a journey,
She told me she was tired.
This world had broken her will to live,
Long sleep- was what she desired.
12 year old, me could not understand,
Why sleep with so much to wake for?
The stars in itself kept me up at night,
In awe of their beauty and creation.
I was a kid, and she was a kid,
Two beings with different experience,
She wanted to sleep,
My own days were too short-
Our route had no intersection.
I once met a girl on a journey,
And she told me she was tired,
Now I wonder if maybe I’d shown her my life,
Her skies might be a bit clearer.
Years have gone by, since my encounter
And I hope her grey clouds have departed;
There’s a twinge in my heart,
When I think of the past,
And there was little I did to help her.
The beautiful image above is courtesy of This Site
I am not radiant like the sun,
Nor startling like lighting,
eye catching like a rainbow,
Loud and proud like the thunder.
I’m just a girl
Who’s taken too long to realise,
everything she needs,
she’s had within her,
Right from the start,
To surf through life’s storms,
And emerge at the finish line,
A victor? Maybe not.
But it’s the journey Which matters-
I know all I am not,
And pointing just those facts to me,
You are one of them,
I do not want.