"William Blake" by Thomas Phillips‘Prayer of the Guilty Poet’ and Other Poetry by Joe Tessitore The Society September 4, 2021 Beauty, Humor, Poetry 14 Comments . Prayer of the Guilty Poet Before I put these words to ink, Be still, my pen, and let me think. Are they the balm to expiate, Or bomb indeed, to detonate? . . A City Short Make no excuse, I heard a sneeze! Old man, produce Your papers, please! . . Joe Tessitore is a retired New York City resident and poet. NOTE TO READERS: If you enjoyed this poem or other content, please consider making a donation to the Society of Classical Poets. NOTE TO POETS: The Society considers this page, where your poetry resides, to be your residence as well, where you may invite family, friends, and others to visit. Feel free to treat this page as your home and remove anyone here who disrespects you. Simply send an email to email@example.com. Put “Remove Comment” in the subject line and list which comments you would like removed. The Society does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments and reserves the right to remove any comments to maintain the decorum of this website and the integrity of the Society. Please see our Comments Policy here. CODEC News:Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 14 Responses Paul W Erlandson September 4, 2021 Very witty, Joe! I must ask, in the case of the first, how did you answer yourself? The second is chilling in its brevity and directness. File under Non-Fiction, sadly. Reply Joe Tessitore September 4, 2021 jd’s right – both, and lately it’s getting harder and harder to find the balm. Reply Sally Cook September 4, 2021 Very nice, Joe. Reply jd September 4, 2021 So pin-point true! We are all hypochondriacs now. To answer Paul’s question, both. Reply Mike Bryant September 4, 2021 Joe, as usual, pithy, pertinent and perfect. Reply Russel Winick September 4, 2021 Joe: Great stuff. I love them! And have found myself saying that prayer many times! Reply Jeff Eardley September 4, 2021 Brilliantly enjoyable Joe, we expect no less from the master of brevity. Reply C.B. Anderson September 4, 2021 Very sharp, as usual, Joe. Reply Alexander Ream September 4, 2021 Brevity (and) Soul (and) Wit Reply Cynthia Erlandson September 4, 2021 Clever and fun! Reply Joe Tessitore September 4, 2021 Thanks to all of you, very much. Reply Allegra Silberstein September 5, 2021 So short and yet your poems say so much! Reply David Watt September 5, 2021 In this case, economy of words enhances quality of product. Reply Lannie David Brockstein September 5, 2021 Why should any poet be shamed if the narrator or character in their poem uses weaponized language? Where is it written that every narrator or character in a poem has to be a hero? Movies have characters who are villains, as do plays. So why not poems, too? What would George Lucas’ “Star Wars” saga be without Darth Vader? What would Shakespeare’s “Othello” be without Iago? Regarding the off-stage language of anybody who, in being off-stage, is therefore not portraying a fictional character—of course their use of language should not be weaponized, and all the more so when children are present. This comments section is this page’s off-stage area, whereas its poem and essay section is its on-stage area. To recognize that boundary, is to knowingly respect the difference between fantasy and reality. For anybody to limit another by shaming (which is a form of bullying) them for what kind of language can be used in their poem and thus on-stage, is oppressive. It is as unethical as not insisting that what is said off-stage should always be civilized—even if what is said be words of dissent. If something cannot be said off-stage with decorum, then it is either not yet ready to be said off-stage, or it is ready to be voiced on-stage provided that it is also artistically expressed. The weaponized use of language is deadly, but not when used on-stage by an actor who is performing the role of a fictional character that is an evil character—and similar to the way that on-stage, all swords and guns are mere props and not the real thing. Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. Δ This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.