Week of Feb 3 - Feb 9
R. Eirik Ott
BECOME A POET OF THE WEEK
by e-mailing a few of your shorter pieces or one long piece to me ALONG WITH a brief bio. It's fun, it's easy, it's free. Impress your friends. Impress your mother.
Send to: POTW@PoetrySuperHighway.com
R. Eirik Ott is not a poet, nor does he claim to be one, nor does he claim to write poetry. Etheridge Knight is a poet. Maya Angelou is a poet. E.E. Cummings was a poet. But, Eirik? No, he's not a poet. Eirik is a writer, to be sure, who incorporates elements of poetry and stand-up comedy into his performances, but poet? Nope, Eirik feels that if you gathered all the people in this world who consider themselves a poet and killed them you would not only cut the world's population by 75% but you'd also leave a whole hell of a lot of excellent writers untouched. Eirik feels it takes more than a handful of poems to make someone a poet. Writing a poem and considering yourself a poet is like putting out a grease fire in your kitchen and considering yourself a fireman, or growing house plants and considering yourself a farmer. R. Eirik Ott is not a poet, but his kitchen is black with the soot of many a poem. He has performed his work all over the place, from San Francisco to Los Angeles, from Chico to Taos. In fact, the readership of L.A.'s Next Magazine voted Eirik their "favorite out-of-town poet." Currently, Eirik is hitting the scenes of Chico, S.F. and Sacramento with a vengence, selling copies of his chapbooks for gas money. Check him out.
The following work is Copyright © 1997 and owned by R. Eirik Ott and may not be distributed or reprinted in any manner whatsover without written permission from the author.
Take Another Drink
So, I'm sitting on my couch drinking early times whiskey straight from the bottle with this chick I've been seeing for the past couple of years and the stereo is spieling this vicious smoky room ricochette Coltrane sax solo and my girl is looking up at the glow in the dark stars on the celing and just a-smiling like a busload of mongoloid schoolchildren on a fieldtrip so I poke her in the ribs with my big toe and I ask her, I say, "Baby, what is it that you're thinking 'cause I just gotta know" and she says, "Man, it's this music, it's this rabid Coltrane bee-bop jazz, it's got me thinking about that time we were in that old White MErcury with the oxblood tuck-n-roll interior and the battery operated Holy Mother of Jesus suction cupped to the dashboard and you were blazing a path down that methamphetamine highway, Man, petal to the metal like a one-man gangbang, bending the needle of that speedometer over backwards and still pressing your foot harder on the gas, so fast that every time we hit a bump we flew like the goddamn space shuttle, man, we took off, man, like 10-15 feet into the air and when we touched back down we bounced like a goddamned skipping stone and you could hear the elbows of those two waitresses knocking against the roof of the trunk every time we hit the ground and I was slumped against the passenger side door trying not to get blood all over the upholstery and listening to the wind oh man that wind the roar of that wind was so loud you could barely hear the sirens of the 17 Nevada state troopers trailing behind us splashing the sharp desert rocks with blue and red blue and red blue and red and they were so close you could almost smell the adrenaline on their breaths but you just kept driving you didn't look at the rear view mirror you didn't look at the gas guage you didn't look at the suitcase in thge backseat you didn't look at me sitting in a puddle of my own blood, man, you just kept driving, and I asked you, I said, 'Baby, what the hell are we gonna do?' and you closed your eyes and opened the glove compartment and reached past the last box of hollow point shells past the .38 with the black electrical tape stretched around the grip searched around 'till you found that Coltrane 8-track tape and you popped it into the tape deck and turned the volume just as loud as can be and I tell you, Man, no music in the history of this planet has ever sounded so goddamned brilliant as that music at that very moment," and this chick I've been seeing for the past couple of years she lays her head back down on the couch closes her eyes and smiles, and I aske her, I say, "Baby... What the HELL are you talking about?" and she shakes her head and says, "Oh, Man, nevermind, just take another drink."