Posts tagged ‘Vanity’

April 9, 2020

False Starts, Dead Ends

So, reluctantly and in vain, I take up my own vain cause.

I can feel my powers—such as they are, such as they were—waning.

It’s a shame that I didn’t use them more when I was in full possession of them. But it’s too late now to fret over considerations of repetition and hesitation. 
Maybe this is where I can finally begin, with the conviction that I have nothing to say. It’s not the most original idea, but I’m running out of steam, running out of ideas, running out of time, and I can’t allow the fact that I have nothing to say stop me from saying something. Although it isn’t easy to suspend self-disbelief and succumb to the phenomenal arrogance of imagining anybody might take an interest in this.

Paragraph by paragraph, I anticipate my potential readers dropping away, wearied and irritated by this tiresome outpouring. But I must insist on pressing forward, if only to honor a life’s work of discarded manuscripts. With so much unfinished, so much unbegun, nothing, no matter how worthless, can be thrown out anymore. I have to complete something, even if it is ignoble of sentiment and unsound of construction; even if it’s not up to the standards of what I once threw out; even if it is the exact opposite of what I had once hoped to achieve—that I was probably never capable of achieving in the first place—even if it reflects badly upon me, even if it is rubbish. Unseemly as it is to be carrying on like this, and tedious as it must be to others, I intend to force myself forward, and, for once in my life, finish something.

The very thought of it made me want to lie down.

I got up from my chair and stretched out on the sofa.

October 17, 2019

A Legacy-Defining Moment

New Emptyscapes up at Alias Books now through whenever.

3163 Glendale Blvd, LA CA 90039

March 28, 2019

Empty Pages

One might think by now
that the complete lack of payback
would have discouraged me.
But it hasn’t.
A jaded urgency
is my obsolete currency.
While doing nothing, I bask
in the glory of creation.
And lost to myself,
I find myself again,
setting up a screen
upon which reality scratches
in vain. To stem the tide
of pettiness, of complaint
so ingrained.

February 20, 2019

Dangerous Minds Valentine’s Day

https://dangerousminds.net/comments/this_valentines_day_tell_them_you_hate_them_with_the_hate_poems

November 15, 2018

Share the Selfishness

Available elsewhere, and from Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Hate-Poems-John-Tottenham/dp/1878923293/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1542304597&sr=8-1&keywords=the+hate+poems&dpID=41FfGSl2GOL&preST=_SY291_BO1,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch

“In elegantly-wrought laments of self-loathing and mean-spirited love poems, the author finds that he has more to say on already exhausted subjects, and gives voice to the kind of thoughts most people prefer not to express but will nevertheless automatically relate to and be entertained by. Tottenham has staked out a singular terrain where egotism and self-loathing meet, where futility merges with urgency, and beauty is created out of bitterness. If nothing else, he furnishes proof that a poet maudit can still, if not thrive, at least survive, alive and unwell, in this benighted age.”
from the introduction, by Louis Pipe

October 24, 2018

Emptyscapes: Art Show

Lora Schlesinger Gallery
Bergamot Station, B5b: 2525 S.Michigan Ave, Santa Monica CA 90404

November 3 – December 15  2018
Opening reception: Nov 3rd 4-6pm

 

 

September 1, 2018

Say You Love Me

“I love you,” she says,
and my heart sinks.
Knowing what is required of me,
I attempt to reciprocate.
But it’s a struggle,
the words won’t take shape.
No other phrase is so hard to articulate;
no other sentiment is voiced so apprehensively.
I could be honest and say: I love you
but almost everything about you annoys me…
But somehow
those three precious, perilous syllables
are squeezed out, squeamishly:
“Isle… of you.”
It never sounds right when I say it,
but I say it
to put her at ease,
because what you get out of it,
temporarily,
is peace.

 

February 23, 2015

Hooked on a Feeling

Vital Decline

I marvel at my feelings,
but I don’t trust them.
I’m dazzled by her,
but I don’t trust her either.
I’m not sure that she even likes me.
Which is fine, I don’t like her much either.

July 3, 2014

Suicide by Kickstarter

tin-cup

http://artillerymag.com/pricks-kicks/

April 22, 2014

Spread the Joy

The not-quite-yet-exhausted subject of love
will be celebrated and lamented by others
and myself at Beyond Baroque,
681 Venice Blvd, CA 90291.  Saturday May 3rd, 8pm.

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