Yeah, so like I’m always on the market but I don’t necessarily go around advertising it because, hell, what’s to advertise?
Like those old fighting words don’t talk about it, be about it I am always on my grind. The work of the grind is apparently not what some have imagined it to be. Therefore, the question—or really statement—always comes up, “So Darlene’s still dating/writing?”
I kinda hate that. Kinda a lot.
I know I shouldn’t be annoyed. Humans are visual creatures—we wanna see what’s up. So y’all wanna see me out with random and sundry men; texting my meantime away huh? My name in the front window of your local Barnes and Noble; check me out at your local library; come to my readings and signings in your best bohemian chic outfit?
Sorry I won’t be able to help you on either front, homie.
But a little about this grind thing you might not have understood or just never thought about…
Sometimes I have no idea where a poem comes from or why.
I start with intent these days probably as often as I start with that compelling enigma of artists wherein we claim to be “spoken to.” Sometimes, like last night, I can feel the urge but just can’t make it happen.
Lately I’ve given myself over to the discipline of intent; it’s my best defense against the raging insanity nipping at my heels. I schedule my day, meals, work out because I know I’m teetering on a breakdown and structure is a pretty good glue to hold my pieces in place.
Anyway, I hate to admit that the worst shit produces the best writing. I guess it’s kind of like the cow dung fertilizer they use on the fields around here. Ahh, the smell of spring planting! (I hope my harvest is worth it).
Production is, of course, only part of the deal. The work of publication is easy enough, but I’m not Master P and don’t have the wherewithal to sell a book from the trunk of my car. Besides, let’s be honest: who buys books and music other than musicians and writers and the family and friends who love them or wanna show them off to their friends?
Publishing is competitive for that reason among many.
But writers, musicians, artists are who they are regardless of public recognition or even titles. And I am darlene **swallowing hard** a poet. Short publication list, made-up words, and all.
And I will always be regardless of how sporadic or cheesy my production and/or publication. Or here’s an analogy that might help you understand better: it’s like being Black—it won’t change; I can’t change it (and for the record, wouldn’t change if I could)!
Exhibit A: www.diodepoetry.com
Exhibit B: www.depoetry.com
Exhibit C: www.torchpoetry.org