The White Shoe Irregular:
It was fun while it lasted.

The White-Trash Poet

Joseph Hunt

I didn't mind being the white-trash poet.
It was tough work,
but somebody had to do it.
"We are pleased with your get-up-and-go,"
they told me.
"Thank you," I said.
"The position has been vacant
since Richard Brautigan died."
"How did he die?"
No one would tell me.
In the daylight,
between nine and five
(with a half-hour for lunch),
I wrote white-trash poetry.
I wrote mostly about the police
and how they were trying to crack down
on my illegal crack operation.
Every other word
was a swear word.
Then, when I came home,
in the privacy of my own home,
behind closed curtains,
by candlelight,
with a lampshade placed over the candlelight,
I would write sonnets,
Petrarchan, Shakesperean,
sestinas, haiku, villanovas —
all in four-four time,
rhyming every second and third lines,
as often as my conscience allowed,
every second and third lines.
I used foreign words —
Latin and French and Swedish —
and antiquated words
like "albion" and "gramophone"
and allusions Robert Pinsky
(former U.S. poet laureate)
wouldn't understand!
I wrote the poetry of God!