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ODE TO THE UNKNOWN WRITER

Phil Roberts 1957 (Melbourne)

In Melbourne’s streets
The unknown writer dies,
Wreathed in all his solecisms;
On Melbourne’s roads
The unknown writer lies,
Sheathed in all his pleonasms;
Unrepentant to the end of life
A rebel against the ordinary,
Against totalitarianism.

The unknown writer’s death
Has passed without lament,
His words unknown, unseen in print;
The unknown writer’s final breath
Has finally been spent,
Like a broken, discarded flint;
His dreams of fame bereft
His work is beneath contempt,
Or so his critics hint.

The unknown writer’s art
Was time and money wasted,
According to his own family;
And with each poison dart
His poetry has tasted,
Each sly, unsubtle homily,
The unknown writer’s heart
Would slow but surely break,
Until he died in ignominy.

THE END
© Copyright 2021 Philip Roberts
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

About this poem

The worst bit about being a failed artist (especially if you believe you have some talent) is that no-one in your family ever supports you. Instead, they taunt you, torment you for decades, demanding to know when you will, "Give up this foolishness and get a real job!"

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Written on September 17, 2003

Submitted by PHIL_ROBERTS on July 13, 2021

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Phil Roberts

I am 64 and loves cats, rock music, and horror fiction and poetry more…

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