Poetry is puke on paper, I think. I'm not saying that I don't like poetry. I love it. I'm just saying that's what it is. Brain puke. Soul puke. This is what I have swirling around inside of me. Here it is. Take it. Allow me to throw it up all over you. Sometimes, in the detritus you find something that you can identify with, that you can latch on to. And sometimes you can't.
I write a little poetry from time to time. I have no idea how good it is. (I have a feeling that it might be closer to puke in a literal sense. But, hey, my mom thinks it's good.) But that's the thing about poetry. It's so much you, how can you separate yourself from it and take a look at it objectively? And why would you want to? That's why I have such awestuck respect for people who get up in front of microphone and put themselves out there. That takes guts.
I went to a poetry and fiction reading at a coffee house in Davis last night. It was put on by the English department at UCD. The readers were all grad students. Going to stuff like that makes me feel like I studied the wrong stuff in school, or maybe not enough of the right stuff. I almost went to a smaller private college in the bay area where I could have minored in creative writing. The science program was just about nonexistent though. Davis was the place that had the environmental program I wanted so that's where I went. You can't minor in creative writing at UCD though. I took a lot of comparative lit classes. I took the one lower division creative writing class they offered and loved it. I applied to the upper division creative writing class and didn't get in. I picked up that disappointment and slung it on my back with the rest of my baggage and trudged back to soil science class.
Don't get me wrong. I loved my science courses. My first geology class was almost a religious experience for me - all my questions about life, the universe, and everything answered in seismology and plate tectonics. But I think I could have done this other thing too.
I still can, I hope. After all, do you really need to go to school to learn to puke poetry on people? Nah, you just need a piece of paper. I was sitting there last night thinking, you know, I can do this. So why am I not doing it? Why do I just dabble in it?