The performer can barely wait to step into the spotlight and pour out his soul to friends and strangers. So, it is with writers, except for us the spotlight is kept so dim only we can see it.
This is my performance. It’s my bit of soulfulness tinged with cleverness. Don’t you dare breathe the word “inspiration!” That’s a word for amateurs. That’s a word every writer who takes his work seriously should blot out or otherwise remove from the dictionary. Any tried and true writer/performer will tell you with the straightest face imaginable “inspiration” is but a weasel word for the air he breathes 24/7. Hearing him say it you are allowed to believe he is only performing.
In honor of the above sentiment I offer a bit of verse that has made the rounds. As far as I’m concerned, this one says it all, thus is a good performance. It’s clever—nod to Beethoven—and it’s heartfelt in that I used to raise hogs. (Recently I was surprised, and saddened, when one of my sons told of his terror when the hogs squealed. He had every right to feel that way. Those porkers could be scary devils.)
This is light, yes; it’s also as real as I get.
There’s not a sad word in it.
If I could be a rowdy pig,
Snout wreathed by Mother Earth,
I would not give a rancid fig
How others read my worth.
I’d root like Hell the whole day long,
I’d sleep like mud at night,
And Oink to Joy would be the song
I’d sing with all my might.