There is very little worse than being a failed poet, you put yourself in writing and it is rejected! Yourself is rejected, your human, your being. Someone might argue that it is actually harsher to be rejected upon looks or gender or qualification, but I honestly can’t imagine anything worse than a rejected mind, a rejected way of seeing the world, differently.
As a poet you are already born, thus you are unlikely to change and see the world the way other people see it, your loneliness in your view point adds to your suffering and inability to find your place, failure to find a comfortable spouse, scarcity of empathic companionship, friendships are as intense as they are fragile, the paradox of being - very rarely - inspiring yet unbearable, intimacy is exhaustingly vigorous and destructive.. almost all things are immediately within reach and are immediately missing .. the things we want from our acquaintances, the things we want from life, from our produce (writing), they are there, however, not to our disposal or consumption, what we want is available, however, not available to us..
In my mind I can be complex and I can be simple but I cannot balance complexity and simplicity to match the liking of publishers or readers.. I read what most publishers accept and appreciate and I find it a mixture of extreme simplicity and complexity, a seesaw of allowing the reader to enter the writer’s thoughts, then cleverly pushing the reader out.. creating unnecessary mystery, as if readers don’t actually want to understand everything a poet is saying as they claim they do. I, on the other hand, fail to see the enjoyment of being left baffled at the end of a poem, I never saw any reason for poems to look like riddles and for reader to have to solve them..
My energy and appetite for writing drains me, perhaps because we are led to believe that it is not good writing unless it is published and publishing is not easy… it is one person’s opinion, I repeated over and over to myself as my last collection of poems (written in Arabic) were returned to me with a rejection slip, I did not give it too much thought and began sending them off to other publishing houses.. but I am unhappy doing so, a deep feeling of whoring fills me, I feel as if I am giving myself too blatantly.. I am not a proud person but have always valued dignity and there is so much to lose when I am sending off these e-mails asking. Then there’s the doubts, the lack of confidence, the insecurities; do I add Dr. to my name at the end of the e-mail or would that be too arrogant? do I sign off with thank you or kind regards? should I send my CV or wait for them to ask me to send it?
Still, it is heartbreaking every time I’m at the book shop and there are piles and piles of books dumped in a large basket with a sign that reads reduced price. These books are unwanted because they've been on the shelves for too long with no one wanting to part with a meager sum of money to own them, they have to go these minds, these selves, these lonely view points.