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AN OPEN LETTER: “Artistic” Dude From The Bachelorette “Wrote” A Book Of Poems

LOL LOL LOL: A GOOD FUCKING BOOK OF POEMS BY Chris Siegfried, the dude who won The Bachelorette. Yeah.

LOL LOL LOL: A GOOD FUCKING BOOK OF POEMS BY Chris Siegfried, the dude who won The Bachelorette. Yeah.

Some baseball-playing asshole from the Bachelorette wrote took a dump on thousands of years of written word a book of “poetry” and probably genuinely believes he’s a poet.

….And here I was genuinely believing that my MFA degree was a total crock of shit! (I should note: I  do think the MFA degree is completely flawed and in most ways useless and masturbatory).

I guess some things are glaringly obvious: at least you know the people who spent cash money to study an art form we could have totally done at home, on our own (and yes, I know, I know–you want to teach) were dedicated to the art of poetics. You don’t need an education in poetry at all. You don’t even need a college degree. But my god — you need to know how to read in order to write well. Reading is free!

Let me fill you in, Chris Siegfried, because I’m really serious here: you’re on television trying to find love. What does that even mean? Who the hell are you? And, if you’re not trying to find love and you’re on television because you’re decently attractive and reality TV sells and you’re getting a paycheck, I get it. Do your thang, gentleman,  but do not – I repeat – do not get into that hefty squat position and drop your deuce all over those of us who spend every day writing Real Poetry. I’m not bitter. I’m exasperated and yet unsurprised. Celebrity poetry (does this guy even count as a celebrity?) is always a total joke. Even Jewel’s poems. Even my main man, Billy Corgan’s poems.

We Real Poets (and I use this term semi-jokingly, because this subject matter is completely ridiculous) write between job breaks, taking care of sick parents, working full-time jobs and generally being a Real Human. We write  then edit, re-edit, obsess about and submit to countless literary journals only to be rejected or accepted. Have you spent your hour-long lunch–break at McNally Jackson books reading every single chapbook that you couldn’t even afford to buy? Do you know the difference between Saddle Stitch and Perfect Bound? Do you like alt-lit? Are you into white space? Do you not even know what poetic terms mean but still try to do something obliquely unique with your work?

Okay. So let’s pretend you were born in the jungle and you’d never, ever, ever been exposed to poetry ever before in your life. Bookstores weren’t around. Let’s pretend you grew up in a family of accountants who never exposed you to the written form. Let’s pretend you loved to write, and you did, and you called yourself a Poet. The one duty of any and every poet is to be true to themselves and write. Got that down? OK, good.

This is where Publishing comes in. If you truly believe you should be spreading your word, you might move from simply being a poet to studying craft–no, silly, not in an MFA program. Just at home.

You don’t have to like everything you read. You don’t have to imitate it. You don’t have to love the canon. All you have to do is be informed. And, if after reading some books, and after peeking your head out from whatever fucked-up, self-obsessed, cheese-filled, zero-calorie, ignorant rock you’ve been under your whole life, you still–STILL--think what you’ve “penned” or “co-penned” is in any way, shape or form “good,” then you, your agent, your editor and whatever idiotic money-hungry fool you keep as an acquaintance are making an Absolutely Grand And Perfectly Hilarious Fool Of Yourselves.

I’m sorry.  I really am. I’m not being a snob. I’m just suggesting that if I mix water, olive oil and flowers into a jar, then I wouldn’t be making Chanel #9, right? Right.

The problem is that celebrities often find ways to get their drivel published–and because you people are so, so much closer to the Public eye than we Poets are, you sort of “define” and “publicize” what Poetry is.

This guy. Not even that scarf and those eyes could persuade me to read that whole book.

This guy. Not even that scarf and those eyes could persuade me to read that whole book.

Now: let’s take a moment to make fun of you. Props on the super clever title and the really unique idea that some people “chat on their phones.” Isn’t it a strange, wild, beautiful world to sit and watch the randomness of people! How artistic! How deep! How observational of thee. Dumbass.

“OBSERVATIONS” 
(from the “Diamonds” period)

To sit and listen can be quite calming,
Although the noises sometimes alarming. 
You look around and see different faces, 
Their minds run rampant, each has their twitches.

While some read papers, 
Others chat on their phones. 
Some just sit, 
Watching everyone, people watching.

The observer, 
He who is still writing, 
Has many observations, 
Within these walls confining.

As the pencil lay down, 
His head on a swivel,
He enjoys the company, 
Of the randomness of people.

For an in-depth analysis of this guy’s poetic format, metaphors and nuances, see Jezebel. 

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7 thoughts on “AN OPEN LETTER: “Artistic” Dude From The Bachelorette “Wrote” A Book Of Poems

  1. Why were my previous comments deleted? they were not anymore personal they straight-out calling someone you’ve never met an asshole. Poets who censor, critics who can’t take criticism, UNCOOL.

  2. I think the real problem is not that he’s writing poetry. Poetry is just art and it’s unfair to say “he’s not a *real* poet” since poetry itself is sort of subjective. Maybe he loves to write, that’s okay. That being said, it is a serious travesty that this mega-douche got published just because he’s stereotypically attractive and was on TV for like…a minute. Based on his poem, I’m guess he hasn’t read much poetry because how can you read Leaves of Grass, for example, and then write something as menial as “I’m sitting around watching people. Yup.” Poetry is one of the greatest expressions of human experience, and like a piano player must practice piano, poets must read ALL THE POETRIES! And write ALL THE TIME. And then take your best, most fucked up, painful or sexy or ecstatic poems and publish those. Not just scribble some shit in a journal and get hell of money for it. That just ain’t fair.

  3. I didn’t realize the poetry police were back in town. I’m sure there were members of the Poetic Orthodoxy who thought Emily Dickinson, a failed seminary student and women couldn’t be a poet. Or a poor orphaned failed military cadet named Edgar Allen Poe. Who gets to decide who gets to be a poet. What about the disenfranchised and uneducated poets, they don’t have MFA’s. I’m not saying his poetry is good, I’m saying that his television occupation shouldn’t mean he gets no voice, and can’t do his art. You have the right to dislike it, but be weary of lines like “those of us who spend every day writing Real Poetry.”Whats real poetry and who decides what that is. With thinking like that we may never have gotten to enjoy Dickinson,Poe,Thoreau, or Kafka, all rejected in there time.

    • Oh, the Poetry Police have been back for about 7 years, yeah. Maybe 8?

      First of all–I flat-out rejected the IDEA of the MFA in my article. So, no, you don’t need an MFA to write poetry. I’m not sure how that was misunderstood. I actually said this: “boy, just when I thought MFA sucked, here comes this guy.”

      The difference between the disenfranchised, quieted and rejected writers you mention–Dickinson, Poe,Thoreau, and Kafka (rejected in their time due to a lot of factors–society, religion, etc)–is that they were later canonized as a result of their talent. Taste sure does come into play, but I guarantee Siegfried isn’t in the same category.

      If you’re comparing a popular, well-paid TV character and baseball player who is widely accepted in society (read: not a woman whose work won’t be read) with poets quieted by society, then we must be having difference conversations here.

      Everyone has a right to a voice. Everyone. But if people are going to write shit, then everyone else has a write to comment on it.

      Denying him a thumbs-up on his work won’t keep society from precious literature, I promise. “Real Poetry” is the same as “Real Art” of any kind: a person tries…just a little bit to bypass what already exists.

      Consider Mary Oliver’s passage from The Poetry Handbook: “The poet must not only write the poem but must scrutinize the world intensely, or anyway that part of the world he or she has taken for subject. If the poem is thin, it is likely so not because the poet does not know enough words, but because he or she has not stood long enough among the flowers–has not seen them in any fresh, exciting, and valid way.”

      Sure, he might be observing the world from Starbucks–but he’s not writing about it in “fresh, exciting, and valid way.” It doesn’t take an MFA–or many brain cells–to see that.

Want to join the discussion? Luna Luna encourages well-reasoned, thoughtful, useful, civil, constructive, respectful and intellectual dialogue. That said, we're not into name-calling or bullying or character attacks. Violating comments will be deleted. Please read the post thoroughly and try not to make assumptions about the writer's perspective. Let's start talking!

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