OK, don’t be silly.

I’ll try.


So, a poet?

Apparently
so?

I am honored
& humbled,
both.


That’s not poetry, it’s just format.

Yeah.


Why do you do that?

What?


The staggered line break thing.

This publisher guy told me people need lots of white space on the page these days because our attention spans are so shot.


That’s it?

That and a stint through Nashville songwriting while studying wisdom books like Ecclesiastes & the Tao.


Ah.

Darkness. Light. Contrast. Beauty. Chaos. Cadence.

It makes you sound
more profound
than you
really
are.

And in songwriting, the economy of words. Saying so much with so little.
Right or wrong, I tend to choose song over story. But to have both is the sweetest magic.


Example.

Guess I shoulda
known
by the way you
parked your car
sideways
that it
wouldn’t last

bangbang. bang

Is it the rhythm? The story? The melody? If you take it apart it dies a little, so it must be alive. Kind of nonsensical, really.

So what is it?

Emotion. And emotion can be so senseless. Make me feel something. Give voice to my secret joys & private pain that I cannot find the words for. Teach me something about myself I did not know but sorely need to learn. That’s always been my goal: To speak from the secret place and try to make people think & feel something. Because the forces of lethargy & distraction are legion.

It helps to be mysteriously spiritually smitten & given to magical thinking.


I liked when that quirky girl wrote: “You are one dark-ass bastard but you write about Jesus in ways that somehow don’t offend me.” A lot of people feel you are fixated on the religious stuff.

I’m an absurdist at heart & art is my apologetics.

Maybe. Man, I don’t know. If I have any religion, that’s it. I don’t know. But I know
that I hope and I believe that hoping is greater than knowing because I’ve gotten to the
point where I know a lot less and hope a lot more.


So, sir, are you a poet?

I don’t know…


Heh.

…but I know I love the power of the words. Words change the world. Can I leave you with a Scripture?


What am I going to say, no?

John 1:1

In the Beginning
was the Word.
& the Word
was with God
& the Word
was God.

& the Word
was Life


If that’s the Beginning, what about the End?

There is no end.

The Words never End.

It’s happening again. The generational turnstile is clicking forward a third-rotation, sweeping from mystic Generation X to the text-message tapping, social-media snorting, Obama-loving, Gaga-blasting, vampire-lusting gang that goes by Millenials.

Last semester, I walked into the college classroom where I taught a survey of American literature to discuss the poetry of Robert Frost.

I may have walked into the classroom with a scowl. I can’t be sure.