Sometimes, you read something that does all the things that great writing does. It challenges you, inspires you, and makes you love writing all over again.
Ron Currie, a professor of Creative Writing at the Stonecoast MFA program at the University of Southern Maine, shared a viral (for Facebook poetry) poem on his facebook page a couple of months ago titled “f*$% you ee cummings” (how’s that for a title?). I encourage you to follow the link and read it. I really loved this poem.
Currie’s poem asks a lot of important questions about the planet, the value of human life over other kinds of life, and pop culture.
It also inspired me to write my own poem.
I found the title from a text my friend sent me. And, I’m sharing it because I enjoyed writing it. I enjoyed thinking about Currie’s poem in a new way. And I hope you enjoy it too.
Guided Meditation for Suburban housewives to stop worrying about the possibility of being asked to perform with Ariana Grande
Take a long breath in
And a long breath out
You worry all day long
About whether the diapers are causing diaper rash
About whether you can turn away from your baby for five minutes
Is you car seat properly installed?
Can I still carry on a conversation with a grown up?
You worry about…
Is that the sound of goldfish spilling in the kitchen?
Or blocks being dumped on the floor?
you JUST cleaned up.
Parenting is full of low grade terror
Did I put those things in all the plugs?
and high grade terror
Will she drown?
Will that large bird of prey try to catch my child like the small helpless animal he is?
Will she suffer from global warming?
We do so much to protect them from harm and danger
And yet this greatest danger
Is hurtling toward us like a giant meteor…
what if we’re hit by a giant meteor?
And go extinct like the dinosaurs?
When will he start his dinosaur phase?
And will it be anything like the shark phase?
Did you know that there are hundreds of kinds of sharks
that we make cosmetics from sharks
that many species of sharks are on the verge of extinction
and that the guy who wrote Jaws regrets what he’s done
to make the public afraid of them?
I wasn’t this afraid before I was a parent.
Just let it go.
let it go.
can’t hold it back…
And then of course there’s Ariana Grande
Showing up in your dreams
Probably as a metaphor for your lost youth
for when you used to not be worried about things
When you wondered if maybe you’d meet Justin Timberlake
or a Backstreet Boy
When you assumed you’d be dancing forever
Or at least changing the world
instead of all these diapers.
when Ariana Grande
visits you in your sleep
probably to remind you of things you might have done
maybe in an alternate universe
You’re a back up dancer for Ariana Grande
because you learned hip hop
instead of ballet
maybe in that universe you don’t have as many worries
or maybe you worry that you’re on tour
instead of having babies
maybe in the that alternate universe
you breath in and out
in and out
in and out
maybe you worry that you’ll never get to change all these diapers
maybe you’re super chill in an alternate universe and can fall asleep without guided meditations
lots of people have trouble falling asleep
Probably even Ariana Grande.
Maybe you are just so accustomed to worrying
That simply enjoying music
Is hard for your mind to handle.
And the worries of your daily life
are not solvable
but – a glitter costume and dance routine –
you could handle that.
you made life
and delivered it
and kept it alive for all this time
you survived stepping on legos.
you’d totally crush it.
For real though, if you haven’t yet, go read Ron Currie’s poem “fuck you ee cummings.” Go do that now. You’ll laugh and cry and all the things.