For some, it's womanizing – and some women frequent bars.
And others yet might while their time in starting bloody wars.
For some, it's all their gadgets – and for some, it's devil-drink.
In gambling, by so many names, some others, fortunes sink.
But my addiction started on a leave from a job I had.
It started pleasantly enough but grew to be really bad.
And soon, I realized this – and I saw it getting worse.
But though I tried to stop, I couldn't cease from writing verse.
I wonder whether I will ever once again be sober,
Whether my intoxication will, at last, be over.
I wonder whether I will walk – and sighting cloud or tree,
Restrain myself , on hearing verse that's yearning to be free.
I wonder what's the sense of all the work I do each day,
And all the weekend verse I type that will be thrown away.
At least for one I get a check – and students (some) may profit,
Versifying? Who is there, with a high opinion of it?
For I can write my verses till I meet my mortal end,
At all their gravity, at courts of poetry, pretend.
But most of what I write would make the master poets laugh.
And every village has its rhymes, beside which mine are chaff.
For who can match a Wordsworth or an Omar at their best?
And only when I'm gone will what I write have passed its test.
But should we try, in verses, to compete or to excel?
And should I only write a line and wait – for time to tell?
You know that I have written much, but little that's of worth.
And yet I write – and will perhaps, until I'm one with earth.
For every bard, whose songs are rarely sung, may still aspire
For precious lines, that she has birthed, to live, though she
For truly, just as parents rear a child and then release it,
So also, poets nurse a line, but only so's
to free it.
And so it is, I do believe, with all creative labor,
We only wish to let it go, whose joy of birth, we savor.
And though, for every poem, I can point to woe or season,
So every gambler has his hope – and every drunkard, reason.
But all around, I see the folk I cherish blow like leaves.
No child some leave, except the ones, in which a poet believes.
December 23rd, Mon. (1st,
2nd, 4th & final stanzas added Dec. 25) Brooklyn,