A very long time ago way way back before iphones and Nintendo's and electric cars, and Tony Blur, I used to live in...Blackpool. Yes, that's right, Black-pool. In gaelic it's Dubh-lin. I don't know what the gaelic is for shithole but that would have been a more appropriate name for it. Though, thinking about it I did love the architectural vanities of that long sweeping promenade against whose walls the Irish Sea used to fling itself with relentless vigour.
The point of this ramble is that when I was in my late teens/early twenties I was hitting the pubs and clubs and almost everyone I knew was, or claimed to be, a writer. I found an actual poet and we used to huddle in pubs reading our latest works to each other and casting lustful glances at any girls in the vicinity. I never saw any of the other 'writer's' work, it was always in preparation. I came to realise that though these people could pontificate on any and every aspect of the art of writing as a theoretical exercise, what they wanted was the perceived cachet of being a tormented writer without the somewhat stolid and unromantic activity of sitting at a desk for hours at a time while nuclear explosions go off in the imagination and then trying to confine that to the blankly unrelenting page.
I came to realise then, that any productive writer even if they are producing rhyming couplets to their poodle, is worth so much more than the phoney writers who've read everything by the oulipo group and can post-modernly do a wicked gender/transcending relativistic critique of whatever you have produced and whose wicked insights can leave you gasping as you are crucified on the poisoned barbs of their wit. These guardians of the literary heart, will leave you feeling like a drooling idiot for daring to offer your poetic baubles for their distinguished attention. You realise as you stare into the narcissistic depths of their peepers that you are in fact, no writer at all. What you are is a scumbag, a running sore, a leprous pretender ringing your little bell in the darkness of your own pustulent ignorance.
Whoah! Where did all that come from? This is straight from my Id-quill, spilling over the page in poolings of naked truth. Please continue!
2.50pm: The poet lumbers away from his desk of dreams and stumbles downstairs to find some coffee. (To be continued...)
5.35pm: Children fed he shuffles back to the desk of dreams trailing his sisyphean mortal coil behind him and commences: What is Poetry? Ah that is the question. Once he responded 'let me go away and think about it'. Returning aeons later he said with all seriousness-'If the World is a tree then Poetry is the wind in it's branches.' Minutes passed....then:
'Why wind? Why not the seed-ripening sun? Or the all-encompassing rain? Why not just the weather?'
'The weather!' he bleated weakly, 'you can't say that Poetry is the Weather!'
'Why not?' Minutes drip from the branches of the World Tree...phut...phut...phut. A poetic wind softly rustles it's greens.
'Because, because, because it's just not right, damn your eyes! And another thing, if you barbarically plough my metaphorical allusions you will expose my poetic roots to the harsh winter frosts. You will destroy my crop, my potatoes will blight and my carrots will bolt.'
'Well then,' replies the torturer 'so what is Poetry?'