Dear Shmuck,

So what’s the matter? You can’t write
a line sometimes, just an iambic pentameter,
to give an old woman some comfort?

You think it’s easy, I shouldn’t get tired,
slaving year after year on Mount Parnassus
to inspire ungrateful galoots like you
with divine madness?

And you, you neglect your craft
and the prospects of art,
all you care about is your groupies
who pant over you at your readings
and want to learn about life
from your golden lips, you bum.
For this I rescued you from graduate school
and developed calluses
plucking my goddam lyre?

I give you two precious gifts,
the sonnet and the sestina, and what do you do?
You write a magnificent sestina.
But tell me – what’s wrong?
You didn’t like the sonnet?

I’m not asking – heaven forbid –
you should write a whole book for me
like that nice boy Robert Graves.
But would it hurt you to praise me a little,
maybe, as the source of all creation?

But no, I go week after week
knowing that for you, the big Poet,
it’s too much to pick up a pen
and a scrap of paper
and write me a haiku – a limerick even –
so I know you’re still inspired.
Am I asking for an epic?

You should only be some day
a source of inspiration yourself
and know how it feels.

With all my love,
Your Muse



  1. Sid the Very Awesome · · Reply

    So you wouldn’t even pick up a pen–or a mouse even–to satisfy your mama. No, I’m not Yiddish, but why hold that against me–instead of you know what.

  2. Judith Lechner · · Reply

    Great idea. Hilarious. My muse must feel the same way. I’ll ask.


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