Back in 1969

Back in 1969, a new professor of English

at a small Midwestern college

said his specialty was poetry, a dying art

he added as he left the mailroom.

In 2013, a comic radio personality interviewed

a former state and national poet laureate

and in a gag for the audience said that

poetry was just music without the music and

“talked” instead of sung. The laureate

objected politely but somewhat

unpoetically by saying that lyrics

by themselves without music weren’t

poetry. Simply, he needed only use a simile

by mentioning Steve Allen’s Tonight

Show shtick of “talking”

song lyrics without the music:

“Do wah diddy, diddy, dum diddy do…,” for

instance, and the laureate was old enough

to remember. Still the blogger of poetry had

to admit that his blog wasn’t setting the

internet on fire.  Back in the day, but not

back as far as Steve Allen’s shtick,

the professor must have been on to something

even though academics

and the intelligentsia tell us that the poets

are the revealers of truth. 

Easy for the intelligentsia;

tough for the poets. Seriously, who wants

the truth?

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