The poet doesn’t get it

He comes upon me
halfway between dark and light
and stirs the stew
bringing up tasty morsels
potato onion carrot celery
and rotten stinking beef

I can’t understand
the putrefaction;
I cook with only
the finest roots
and rotting stinking beef

I put the stew on to simmer
and settle with a good
blank page
words come in:
savory rosemary ginger
salt pepper curries
I return to stir, season
and add rotting stinking beef

He’s here to taste
my very best
and heartbroken,
I don’t get it:

he says it’s the rotten,
stinking beef.

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About riverwriter

Poet, playwright, duplicate bridge player, website designer, cottager, husband, father, grandfather, former athlete, carpenter, computer helper for my friends, theatre designer, backstage polymath, retired teacher of highschool English, drama, art, a baritone singer in a barbershop quartet, who knows what else? wordcurrents is on Facebook: Doug also has a Facebook page, "Incognitio", related to his novels.
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4 Responses to The poet doesn’t get it

  1. sdunford says:

    seems like this poem frames the struggle, if not, the play between a reader, the poet and the poem.

    here is what i get from it. the reader (“He”) pokes through the poem, digging for meaning. at times or even usually, the reader digs too far, finding nothing that satisfies, nothing of substance–“rotten stinking beef.”
    L2 would have the reader believe that the poet (the speaker, the “I”) “can’t understand…” this is false…it is the reader who cannot understand. not all poetry is meant to satisfy. maybe the goal is to shock, disgruntle, and confuse the reader.

    why the line break in L15? no others end with conjuctions.

    • riverwriter says:

      Interesting. I have the feeling that this needs to be longer, because my objective is still too obscure. You are on the trail, but I have to find a way to refocus the thrust of this to make it express my intent.

      I think you are right about L15; probably my solution will be to drop the conjunctions in L15,16 altogether.

  2. sdunford says:

    for that matter, you might excise the commas in
    L16-17, to make it more uniform, unless dissension is the purpose there.

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