Home » Poetry » Day 201 – Ten Bucks Well Spent

Day 201 – Ten Bucks Well Spent

Two years ago
I didn’t know
what the hell
a villanelle
was.

But I walked in and everybody was hooting for Ricky
delivering his inaugural poem recitation
as new coffee shop King Of All Poetry
and I thought he wasn’t half bad
(though somebody like me couldn’t be sure.)

But he was only King, Jr.
being led through the ropes
by the Herr, standing monarch
published and prolific
scout of talent and builder of dreams.

The master sat stage right,
ready to pounce and save the show
should his new pupil stumble,
hawking his chapbook.

They were waiting for me,
one such interested and clueless party
to take the wild applause as something relevant,
to be drawn in by the charade of talent,
to buy the line about supporting struggling artists,
to buy the book.

He signed it for me,
GOSH HE AUTOGRAPHED IT
and I read it-
I thought it wasn’t half bad
(though somebody like me couldn’t be sure.)

I found it last night, after all this time,
thin and unassuming, One-Page Epics
I think about Ricky every once in a while
and I wonder if it bothered him much
that a lot of his poems couldn’t fit on one page
and most of them weren’t very epic.

I wonder if his road, like a child movie star,
his coffee shop tour through the city,
promoted and branded a found treasure
by the King, applauded and reverenced
by the crowds, ever led him to get any better.

I wonder if he ever found out what I know,
that villanelles are fine but form without a soul,
that applause is nice but success without the work,
that talent is necessary but work without love
is useless, fleeting, a waste.

And for that lesson two years in the making,
the reassurance that drew tears from my eyes
and placed a tighter resolve on a mind
which would’ve trudged onward anyway-
it was ten bucks well spent.

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One thought on “Day 201 – Ten Bucks Well Spent

  1. I run into this issue when I find stuff I absolutely adored beyond even the nicest cheese sauces back when I first started writing. Sometimes I can’t believed I liked such tripe, and sometimes, I’m glad I’m no longer in the same place where I think the same things are just as good as I thought ten or twenty years ago.

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