Poets Laureate

August 28th, 2007 at 5:18 pm

Now this is a bandwagon I am more than eager to hop on and fervently encourage: the naming of a poet laureate to organizations that are otherwise not in need of a poet laureate, have never had a poet laureate, and are not obviously even related to poetry.

MTVu has selected John Ashberry to be its first Poet Laureate. And bravo to MTV for picking a REAL poet. Not a pop singer, not a rapper, not a folksy-artsy dude with long hair and a guitar who seems to say semi-cogent phrases that blow your mind when you’re on mushrooms, not even a “slam” poet or one of those weird, angry spoken word types, but a REAL, LIVE, GOOD poet.

And this selecting of poets laureate is a trend I would like to see continued. There’s so much possibility! Our country has one. States have them. Cities have them. Do counties? Do corporations? Do professional sports teams?


Then I hereby officially announce my campaign to become the poet laureate for the Dallas Cowboys. Or the University of Texas at Austin Longhorn football team. Or the Dallas Mavericks. Ah hell, I’ll settle for the Cleveland Browns. Or a farm team. I’m willing to start at the depths of arena football and work my way up. I’m patient, a team player, and flexible. Reading my haikus at the halftime shows of high school football games while the drill team is sauntering off and the band is warming up will provide me plenty of time to hone my craft.

Does Google or Microsoft have a poet laureate? They should. Me.

Why do I want to be a poet laureate so bad? It’s the last acceptable position for an artist that garners any respect and adulation without demanding any specific duties. Beyond writing brilliant poems of course.

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