Why do I write?
I erase the reasons
And a little shit says to me
Where you been
Are you still legit?
and I guess I have to come real with it
I never meant poetry to be an occupation
I always wanted it to be but that’s just another reason
When you grab onto intangibles
And hold them dangerously in front of you
And the only one left in this room
Is you.
And you ask when did I tip?
When did I lift up and flail my arms
In the frozen seas of a sunken ship?
When did I fasten my seat in its upright position
Up for one night down for a whole season?
And when did I lose the meaning
Of real talk
When I etched my name in bark and chalk at every tree that tried to trample me
But wait
what’s the real reason
Maybe I don’t like who I am or who I’ve become
Completely narrow in mind
Empty as a drum
Not only have my memories erased myself to the beginning
They have amounted to
Now I write psycheward poems
And keep them hidden in this letter
A letter I have signed sealed
But yet to deliver
This awful treacherous winter
I know I’ll still
Complain in summer
I’ll wish I was you
Upfront and rude
Or maybe you who I’ve known since two but seem to be miles ahead of me
When it comes to do what you do to prove you are you and not a shell of a punch line character you once knew
Or strove to be the uncomfortable silence in the room
Or the one you forget

Or simply overlook.

Or just live on long after.

Or maybe these words I write
Maybe because I have a fucking audience in my mind
Only matter to me
Because I’m a poet
And this is all I know how to do.

A poet
Not a Bentley accountant
Or a trade that means something
I am a builder
A creator
I make something out of nothing
And like Groundhog Day
Everything stays the same
A poem writes itself
Throws a few clues of how I am doing
And is never seen again
Until I create another one with a fucking pen or notes in torrid places
Or I write another one
Because life has built a bridge for me to jump off
And before I take the plunge
Into the cold waters below
I write a poem and calm myself down
Cause that’s the only therapy I know.
That’s it
Not arithmetic
Not slit wrists
No just a pale existence
Your shadow.
Without this I
Don’t’ exist
Now if you feel like me put your fist in the air in solidarity
Because the bridges are built
For not just me
You poet.
You are family.
You poet. You are me
You poet. You are me
You poet.
You are family.
And sometimes without a rhyme scheme
I forget
That I do this for survival
I do this to remind myself I am
No ones shadow
Simply put
I eat
and live
For poetry
And it has kept me safe and sound
While the buildings topple down
And the air rises to unhealthy temperatures
And oceans draw close
I will sit in solidarity with you and
We will Share our Poems
and we won’t feel so alone
As the sky and sea become one.
And there no where left to call home.


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