Why is it that I long to see
a poem by me in Poetry
or find one tucked away inside
the magazine New Yorkers pride?
Atlantic Monthly Magazine?
I'd kill to see my poem between
the pages numbered eight and nine.
I'd puff my chest and crow "That's mine!"
So every year I resubmit
and six weeks later I get hit
with notes that say "I wish we could
print everything you think we should.
Perhaps you do not comprehend.
We've cardinal rules we cannot bend.
The highest standards must be met.
And you, you've mixed your hex with tet.
Poem Two's too short for our milieu
Perhaps you tried to write Haiku?
And Number Three's so goddamn long,
has no one told you long is wrong?
Regretfully we must reject
these poems you hoped we would select.
I know that this sounds awfully rough -
but frankly, they're not good enough."
And so I tuck my tail and whine
how I don't find their stuff so fine.
And I declare that I don't care
if I get published over there
'cuz I've been published lots of times
by editors that like my rhyme
and people who appreciate
the very poems the big boys hate.
And still I act like such a twit
and still I faithfully submit
whatever poems I think are best.
God, let one pass the Wiman test.