Last week I got comments from three new commenters in one day. And while Amy’s comment was flattering, the other two, I have to think, were self-serving.
One of the self-serving comments was left by none other than “Somebody.” This is what he (she?) had to say:
Got that? Yeah, me neither. I’m guessing it’s an ad for a Korean porn site, or maybe a malware farm. But fearing the latter, I haven’t dared click over. Perhaps Kirk can help me out with this one.
The second comment that I suspect of self-servingness came from Grant-Grey Gouda, who fancies himself a poet. His comment struck me as self-serving, because he sought to flatter me without being specific about what he liked from my blog. Makes me wonder who else has seen him leave the same comment and how many times he’s been back.
As a “poet,” his style reminds me of Emily Dickinson in tone, William Carlos Williams in style, and Fezzik the Giant in execution. He could also use some help with apostrophes. Though he makes no claims to being a visual artist, really is there anything more tired as a would-be poet than ripping off a photo of Rodin’s the Thinker for your masthead? And the made-up name “The Humanicana” sounds more like a Banana Republic knock-off store than writing of any literary consequence.
Lest anyone think I’m not constructive, however, I won’t just leave Grant-Grey out in the rain without some coaching. Because after all, if you’re going to make your living as a poet or even share your poetry with other people without soliciting unintended laughter, you better be damn good. But since I’m not a poet myself, the best I can do is provide an example of something that is good.
From Buck Ramsey, I present an excerpt of Anthem:
The grass was growing scarce for grazing,
Would soon turn sod or soon turn bare.
The money men set to replacing
The good and true in spirit there.
We could not say, there was no knowing,
How ill the future winds were blowing.
Some cowboys even shunned the ways
Of cowboys in the trail herd days
(But where's the gift not turned for plunder?),
Forgot that we are what we do
And not the stuff we lay claim to.
I dream the spell that we were under;
I throw in with a cowboy band
And go out horseback through the land.
So mornings now I'll go out riding
Through pastures of my solemn plain,
And leather creaking in the quieting
Will sound with trot and trot again.
I'll live in time with horse hoof falling;
I'll listen well and hear the calling
The earth, my mother, bids to me,
Though I will still ride wild and free.
And as I ride out on the morning
Before the bird, before the dawn,
I'll be this poem, I'll be this song.
My heart will beat the world a warning—
Those horsemen will ride all with me,
And we'll be good, and we'll be free.
Good luck, Grant-Grey. Maybe you should hire “Somebody” as your publisher—he’s really good at mass distribution.