For the Masses

Originally published on July 22, 2016

I wrote this in a bit of a funk after checking an empty inbox three times. One can't write a poem like this in a good mood.

"For the Masses"

To the failures, self-promoted, and self-published
I raise my glass
A toast for the unnoticed!

Or barely so. To the unsolicited
who can't get the interview
let alone the job.

To the rejected, the excluded, the cancelled
the writers with no deadlines
the painters with no patrons.

Important in ways you don't care about
a friend but no lover
a daughter but no mother.

What hope is there for you? None I can think of.
Solidarity in masses
the chance to storm the Bastille

of established success, of white-picket fences
of happy families and conference speakers
and "we're no longer accepting applications."

Cry out to God, you failures! Ask him
for post-mortem publication
If that's all he can offer.

Nobody but him wants to hear your thoughts anyway.