Saturday, September 15, 2007

Poetry Paella

I was probably most notorious in high school for writing what I considered semi-decent poetry. That, and being the only senior to have my own apartment. Anyway, that has nothing to do with the price of empanada in San Roque.

Blogging has been an avenue back to writing, slowly coaxing the poetry out through literary freedom of expression. I chickened out of Script Frenzy with Jane, and my knees are shaky just thinking of the novel writing right now. Still pretty mad about losing my binder full of work, very few of which I have managed to remember and re-write, I decided that I'd start a new online collection. This is the first installment of my Poetry Paella. I've written something in honor of substance abuse awareness month. To be specific, I've written it in honor of the families who live with functional alcoholics.

I grew up in an alcohol laden social/cutltural environment where drinking was the norm. I never knew any "alcoholics", as the ones around me were "functioning" quite well. Like everything in life, one has to come to a point of readiness to evaluate priorities. This is not a poem about my family or a self-reflection. This is a piece of writing that strives to interpret the inextricably complicated functional addict. I'm not an expert and everyone knows I am a fan of the frozen margarita, so I realize I may be treading on some hypocritical turf here, but this is a piece of my heart - so be gentle please.


James said...

Your writing is very moving. I wish you luck with the writing.

Boni said...

Hey! You're on the blogosphere. I linked to you! Cool blog.

Anonymous said...

Your writing is beautiful. PLEASE share more...please.

Tamara said...

Boni, Thank you so much for sharing...When I started reading your post I got goose bumps because I myself write poetry and I thought about sharing one of my poems in one of my first blogs, but I feared I may be made fun of or get comments that would hurt my feeling..At one point in my life I was writing a lot and thought about publishing a book of poetry...but for some reason that dream, kids and everyday life take up most of my time and my writing has been put on a back I get to know everyone in the bloggisphere better perhaps I will find the courage you have to share...Loved your poem!

Jeff said...

Nice job. Insightful and euphonious.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

It's really well done, Boni. It's readable, flowing and the message gets through without being trampled by the vehicle.

I like it.

(Sure beats Sam Guggliotti or Zaldy Dandan trying to be TS Elliot or a verse version of William Burroughs). So I suggest you send it to the Variety for publication in one of their Friday Poetry publications. Send it with a pen name if you don't want to explain the prologue as you did in this blog post.

CNMI Blogger said...

This is wonderful! Keep it up.

I'm reminded of an assignment that one of my professors at DePaul University had given us. She was working on her Ph.D thesis on alcoholism at the time. She assigned us to come up with our own definition of alcoholism and warned us that she didn't want the textbook definition either.

I let my creative juices flow and came up with a script. She liked it; had me distribute copies to the class, and asked me to see her about getting it published. But I never took her up on it.

Anyway, over the years, I've contempted the idea of tracking down this script from inside one of my gazillion boxes packed away, dusting it off if I find it, and getting a local theatre group perform it. As I said, I'm still contemplating it.

But good luck with your creative writing, Bon, and I look forward to reading more!

Boni said...

Steve-O, Cin, Bruce and Jeff: thanks guys. Although I don't much care what some people think of me, your opinions matter because I respect and genuinely like you guys. James is new to the 'sphere, so say hello ya'll! Tami: the worst that could happen in this realm is that the people who you get to know really are good people, will tell you exactly what they think. The other fools that are out there are just trying to blow up things, so ignore them. I know it's hard. There are so many people on the network that are authentic and will take an interest in you as a person. That doesn't mean they won't be brutally honest, so you just have to get used to that. When they've needed to be that way, they usually just send me an email to spare me having to publish a comment:) This is a good place to be once you learn how to steer right, and I haven't done that yet either.

Lex said...

Very nice, more please =)

Saipan Writer said...


It takes courage to write poetry, along with a lot of thought. And it takes courage and some foolish bravado to share it with the world!

Congrats on being all that and so much more.

What we write about says a lot about who we are. Your poem has made me think about some of what I've been.

I lived with an alcoholic until he died. There was nothing functional about it. It made me (temporarily?) insane and broke my heart. His daughter, my daughter is still pissed off at him for it. When she was younger, she cried so many times when other kids at school were picked up by their dads that I couldn't take it.

When you're living with an alcoholic, you blame the alcohol. You blame the friends. You blame yourself. It's one of the ugliest, most destructive "diseases" around. But you're living with it. And when an alcoholic dies, you're still living with it in some way.

And it's all still a mystery,

and I (still) like to drink wine.

Boni said...

That means so much to me. Truly, thank you for sharing.

Jeff said...

Alcoholism is the only disease you can get yelled at for having. Damnit Otto you're an alcoholic. Damnit Otto you have lupus. One of those two don't sound right.

Mitch Hedberg

Bon said...

This poem was about my family. Now that it's over I can share the fact that I lived with a functional dysfunctional alcoholic. It was not a fun ride, but one that taught me a lot about happiness, the acquisition of it and the realization that sometimes people need to learn from their own mistakes.