10% Inspiration


there’s no elevator
to success,
so you’ll have to
throw yourself 
down the stairs.

Lead, follow,
or get your ass 
out of the way 
is the motto here, 
not that you
have any choice:

success is 
10% inspiration and 
90% flop sweat 
while you’re waiting
to be revealed 
as a fraud
and you’re obviously
soaked through.

that there’s no “I” 
in “team” but
there is one 
at the beginning
of “isolation,” 
another one buried
in the heart of 
“exile,” one close
to the end of
“rejection.” Remember

that the longest
journey begins
with a single half-aware
solo stumble. Take it.  
Take that step
and only stop 
when you realize 

that you are suddenly
up to your ass in

Remember then that this
is success since
your objective
was to get so deep
in the swamp
that they would never
find your body.


About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

One response to “10% Inspiration

  • Eileen

    As almost always….I enjoyed your combination of hope and cynicism, of wanting to hide, yet being compelled to risk the vulnerability of success.
    And I find particular delight in the ending: the success of getting so deep in the swamp that they will never find your body. “No eulogies, please.”

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