Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Poetry is Elitist

so I’m going to a reading
and none of my friends want to go
because they think poetry is elitist
and maybe they’re right
but then I start thinking
that maybe they think I’m an elitist
and then I start thinking that maybe they’re right
but I don’t care because
they’re a bunch of philistines anyway
So I go to the reading
and there are a bunch of hipster types there
and I start wondering
if I look like a philistine to them
so I try to act ironic
and sit by myself
in the corner next to a stack of books
at least one or two of which I know I will buy
even though I’m nearly broke
but I feel kind of guilty
because I know poets don’t make any money
it seems elitism doesn’t pay very well
but poetry is better than TV
because it makes you think
and TV only makes you want
and I don’t care whether I get it or not
just that I got something that I can’t get from TV
and, besides, I didn’t waste another night watching
a bunch of dancing has-beens or housemates
fighting over a peanut-butter sandwich
and then I wonder if there’s anything elitist about peanut butter
but I think that’s probably reserved for preserves
and then a voice cajoles me from my smugness
and I realize I’m missing a poem
and think, for a moment, that I may not get it
but then I remember that that’s not the point
so I settle in to be enthralled
but I can’t help but notice the woman next to me
is wearing a too-tight t-shirt
and I think, “wow, that’s a tight t-shirt”
and then I wonder if maybe I’m just here
because I like funky, intellectual girls with hip eyeglasses
and tight t-shirts
and I wonder if that counts as elitist
and I decide it counts for something
meanwhile, the poet is droning on about kittens
but he’s using kittens as a metaphor
not as literal little cats
but I’m not sure what the metaphor is for
because I’ve been too busy wondering if I look ironic enough
to be hip but not too elitist that I look unapproachable
but then I wonder what the fuck I missed
those kittens sure seemed profound
but now he’s on to angst
and I have enough of that
because all that thought of peanut butter has made me hungry
but now I’m trapped here next to these books
one or two of which I know I will buy
instead of food
and I decide that’s fine
because I get to get inside someone else’s head for a change
and, besides, there’s a funky, intellectual girl in a tight t-shirt
sitting three feet away from me
and I realize I don’t really care if it’s elitist or not
I really like poetry

1 comment:

Wendy Maynard said...

Just don't pull out the i_phone or you'll definitely look elitist.