it's not poetry its complacency and that's it. all these damned modern poets billy Collins rt smith mary oliver whoever the hell, they're not trying to find anything at all there is nothing at all anymore! this isn't about courage and it's not about newness it's about sitting at home and eating some shit for dinner and writing a poem praising snowfall or something like that, and it may name modern art and it may cry out the ghosts of every suffering expatriate from thoreau to hemingway but where the hell is the courage? tell me where is the courage, it's gone there's no courage anymore there's no to hell with this damned complacency there's no writing anything wild and perfect and completely missing everything that has ever and will ever exist, its some sort of academic abstraction some cell-phone word formation that is completely betraying the ghost of every pirate who spat out a literary magazine for some drunken bum lying on the street who could still operate a pen. it's not poetry at all if you're going to talk about a dog barking and never even name courage at all because that's what's missing! every artist who shot himself hung himself poisoned himself drunk himself to death had courage even if only believing that there was a worth in the death, there was some foolhardy romantic worth in dying, there's none of that anymore and this is not to say that we should all go kill ourselves, it is only to say that we should make it a little hard and believe in something a little more than this life or the next life but that there is a life when you are pressed against the cold highway, and the best life is always being irresponsible and never waking up except when there is a fire so brightly gnawing at you that you can't help it, there is no poetry anymore there is only poetics. there is no suffering there is no COURAGE anymore, it's all gone. what the hell is spoken poetry? what the hell is billy Collins writing about blind mice or whatever when he's not going to do a damned thing except get school children to read mediocre poetry from an internet website? no one reads it anymore, so we might as well laugh and go fishing in the worst damn storm ever and we might as well write and write about everything that's anything but complacency, and we might as well have some grim courage that's going to see fit the end of literature, because if it's not seen out with a smile then what the hell was it all worth? what the hell was it all worth, if its going to go out with complacency and easy phrases and soft-milk bread that means nothing of risk or nothing of heart or nothing of anything but trying to talk about nothing. thoreau sat in jail and hemingway shot himself and ezra pound went crazy and Kerouac crossed america and hawthorne locked himself in an attic and Blake saw angels and joyce was banished and fitzgerald drunk himself to death and so did faulkner and dostoevsky was nearly martyred and on and on and on…
it's courage. that's what's missing. plain simple damned old bull-eyed courage. if literature is going to hell, then see it out standing eye to eye with the executioner instead of sinking into mundane complacencies. laugh never never never never never never be defeated. be destroyed. but never defeated
that's the simple courage.
that's the whole game