Back when, I had friends

In one shot. I was everything I am not.
I was creative. I was handsome.
I was damaged. And then some.
I was waking into it all.
Till oddball somehow became commercial.

The world doesn’t know me.
Noone does.
Poker guise, faded smile.
I am less then rough.
And half as tough.

I am second to none.
None. Or should I say to noon.
Cause twilight is coming
Reflect on that for a second.
Look for the book in your nearest poetry section.

Think when did writing become manic scribe on a wall.
When did it all go out the door.
What was it all worth?
Why do I try at all?

What was the point of all this?
To try and deny my mental illness?
No that’s not mania. Its brilliance.
Its not anxiety, its just quick thinking
No that’s not the writing of a madman
Or a sad man. Or a lunatic
Its not a letter to the world?
Its not. Not a ribbon, a place holder.
A foot note?

What does it all matter?
Poetry is dead. Deader then the masters.

Long live the strong.
The weak will workshop.
Draft, and redraft
And publish…make a name for themselves.
A name for themselves in poetry.

Poetry was all I had.
It made me everything I am.
Back when I had friends. I had pens.
I had a notebook and a dream.
To be part of a team.
To be part of something.

To be something.
Not wretched.
Not lifeless.
Not empty.
I need to meditate.

Ground and clear.
Take my medicine.
Say goodnight to my audience.


Jason Wright is the editor and founder of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.