This poem will be sad. I do not quite know why
I’m coughing up this secret, but for the past two
months or more the thought’s been haunting me
that poetry is not compassion. Rather an illness
shared with a handful of quite hopeless idiots,
an overcooked complaint that others will find dull
and after dark – it has no powers to heal.
The room is still a room, the bed a bed.
My life's loused up by poetry and even
though I once knew better, I don’t kid myself
when with this heap of print I plague three score
poor readers maybe more, or worse, have two trees felled.