Flaming the Muses: Poetic Pyromania

Haunted by data, hounded by blog-bots, assailed by algorithms, poets have been reduced to human resources, fractionated, monetized and commodified like petrochemical residues of the antediluvian world. In keeping with that metaphor imposed upon us by ourselves, we await a mere spark to begin consuming our own fuel, flaming voraciously into poetic combustion. Through this incendiary process, we liberate the very energy that an unpoetic world seeks to label, quantify and merchandize. Flame, however, cannot be commodified—only intensified, suppressed, or extinguished. Elemental fire may be started by lightning, produced by physical friction, electro-chemical reaction, or started from a pre-existing blaze. Poetry is similar; whether sent from God as a bolt of epiphany, a spontaneous combustion, or as a transposed flame inspired by anterior works, April is our month for playing with metaphysical fire. It is thus that we, as elemental (or just mental) poets, refuse, at all levels (lyrical, cultural, mercantile, geologic, celestial and infernal, etc.) to be co-opted, commodified, and/or in any way politically corrected.

We poetic oilmen and women are the active nihilists of a nihilistic era. We locate promising sites, then we draw up, from below poetic bedrock, raw inspiration. NaPoWriMo allows us to drill deep into the sedimentary layers of poetry and tap into the deposits of lyrical fuel trapped within. Some gets pumped up, some comes gushing spontaneously to the surface in a crude form. It can then be refined to varying degrees of flammability and into differing types of fuel; think diesel versus rocket fuel… one will take you further faster, but both are indeed fuel.

As oilmen and women, we pump our precious resource up in raw form from subterranean seas—the remains of lyric flora and fauna of a previous age buried under the silt of an inundation of data-driven global dullness. Through sheer creative will we set these deposits ablaze, to produce, out of the incoherent night that surrounds us, poetic illumination. In the light of our own flame, we cerebrate celebrate the utter uselessness of our artistic product—by continuing to create it, refine it, and then burn it up in a transcendent pyre of irrelevance. Thus, we wage uncompromising war against the powers and principalities of technoid global dominion. Our useless words, unread and unwanted, undermine the process of attempted global conquest by the unpoetic Enemy.


I Made the New Yorker TWICE!

No joke. I am elated.
I only found out today.
From the August 29 article
Donald Trump, Poetic Muse:

While some poets are tentatively positive (“Call me a chump / But I’m with Trump”), the vast majority register negative reactions to Trump and his candidacy. These include shock (“Today I woke up and smoked / A cigarette of something illegal / And I freaked out / Because / Donald Trump is running for president”); scatological disdain (“Trump dumped on his rump / Hair lumped in a clump”); determined opposition (“We must now thwart the hatred”); escapism (“If Trump wins / I’m moving to Iceland / While he wreaks havoc on the states / I’ll be in Reykjavik eating steak”); and cleverly rhymed condescension (“The mallard was rebuked by Mitt; / adversaries began to bray. / The ducklings murmured: guy’s unfit / to be elected anyway”). 

The article continues, and quoted me again here:

Not all the poems about the Presidential candidates pick a side. One, called “Dual Airbags,” simply bemoans the choice at hand:
“It’s a bitter pill (more like pilloried) / So shall we now be Trumped or Hillary-ed?”

The first poem was from that period when Trump was attacking Cruz and Rubio:

🎼Música Cubana ♪ ♬

Donald quacks. We better duck.
Tell the Cubans to mute that trumpet
While we, together, improve our luck
(or end up ruled by a Socialist Strumpet.)

The mallard was rebuked by Mitt;
adversaries began to bray.
The ducklings murmured: guy’s unfit
to be elected anyway...

The second was written later, as I tried to decide, and lyrically deride, my electoral suicide:

 Dual Airbags

Give him a skinhead, insignia, boots

Less scruples, a swagger-stick, crowds, money.

No black shirts visible. Just business suits,

and pride is restored: tragic but funny.

Proud like a skyscraper, godless as sin

Babylonian promises, towering lies

Reality shows when plutocrats win,

Their rhetoric raining from empty skies.

She-wolves, elected by uninformed sheep

behave predictably, eyeing the flock

Their wool (and the lamb-chops) are hers to keep

Grazing voter—this should come as no shock.

It’s a bitter pill (more like pilloried)

So shall we now be Trumped or Hillary-ed?

Hilarioustrumpet

Both poem quotes were taken from my Hello Poetry site.