Nothing Special

You keep at it 
as if being a poet is special.
There’s nothing special about it —

you see a thing you need to survive,
chase it down, catch it, consume it,
spend hours after cleaning up after yourself
and the mess you’ve made of it, then
sleep until it’s time
to do it again.  Any cheetah can do it,
does it without a lot of thought.

Or you roam constantly foraging
and now and then break into a full run
zigging, zagging, leaping. Looks like fun
to the world watching but it’s complete 
terror on the hoof and maybe (eventually,
probably, certainly)
you die at the end; nothing to it,
any antelope could do it, does it
without a lot of thought.

Yet there you are, doing it
and straining to do it
and pouring angst about it
into a cup fashioned for blood, 
and you want
some kind of award
or some kind of book deal
or some kind of video ranking
or some kind of love for doing it —
God, look at yourself;
could you even survive
if you had to? Could you cheat death
multiple times, or even once?

You want fame for how hard
you’ve made this? You want joy
for being what you have no choice
in being?
Get running or
get gone.
Nothing to this
but that.


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

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