Okrzyki, przyjaciel! (chaircrusher) wrote,
Okrzyki, przyjaciel!

On Dogs and Writers

On a morning where my first job was gingerly removing two perfectly formed dog turds from the living room carpet, the first e-mail I read was from my mom, pointing me to my brother Sean's blog, where he eulogized my mom's dog Kije who died 9/17/2001...

http://sean.sbw.org is where you can read it
if you care to. He wrote it in response to a questionaire for an online NCAA basketball pool.

my brother Ian's blog is always very good as well. I come from a family of really excellent writers. Ironically enough, I think my sibs are all better natural writers than I am, and I have had more pretension to being a writer than they. Hell, I was in the undergraduate poetry workshop for a term at the University of Iowa. How much more pretentious can you get.

Of course Ian was co-author of a best selling book, wrote as weekly column for the Daily Tarheel at UNC, wrote and directed a feature film, and currently freelances here and there.

My sister's blog she writes as someone who is completely fearless and immune to embarrassment. Her current series is about her surgery for hemerrhoids, which displays this in spades. I didn't even KNOW she tried to write until she'd published columns on salon.com. She's the sib who did almost all her growing up after I'd left home, so there's this disconnect between the smart girl with amazingly intense eyes I know now versus the girl who expressed affection by wrapping herself around my left leg and refusing to let go. My defining memory of her was trying to walk around the house with her clamped on my leg like a bear trap.

My brother Steve, 11 months younger than I, writes more or less for a living at this point, and does it pretty well, though his preoccupations are things like re-building cars and airplanes, and not the touchy feely shit the rest of us care about. He edits a newsletter for the American Yankee Association, which is devoted to a particular sort of Grumann private plane.

Steve doesn't think he's a good writer, but he tosses off pellucid, lapidary prose like you'd imagine in the New Yorker, only the subject is some arcane subcategory of aircraft maintenance.

Oh, and on my short, bitter career as a poet: I got into the Undergraduate Poetry Workshop at Iowa for one term, and didn't get in again, which either says the first time was a fluke, or that the experience really did nothing for my skill as a poet. After a while, I realized that while I liked poetry, that I didn't have much inner compulsion to write it. I also realized thast 'making it' in the poetry game was a pretty pale sort of fame, since the only people who gave a shit were other poets. The real brass ring in the poetry biz is a tenured professorship at a university with an endless supply of randy young women (or men) with literary pretensions and a taste for tenured professor cock.

So I became a computer programmer, which is writing poetry for an audience that is content to read your poetry over and over and over.
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