Mark Tulin is an author who lives in California. He has four books of poetry and one short story collection, available on Amazon.
Introduction: The Poetry King
Did you ever fall in love with someone’s talent? Did you ever make them your hero only to find out that they weren’t so special or heroic after all? A person’s wonderful artistic talent doesn’t always translate into a humble and kind person.
I had been disappointed by a poet at a recent social function. I was excited, anticipating a wonderful connection. A mutual friend introduced us. “Oh wow,” I thought. “This is going to make my day.” I approached this poet with the intention of giving him a complement for his book I had just finished. Instead I was met with the most inconsiderate response. There was a quick superficial acknowledgement, a glance and curt smile, then before I could say anything, he turned to another person, obviously wanting to have nothing to do with me.
I was left standing with mouth agape and heart broken.
This disappointment has made me cautious about approaching other people that I admire—literary figures, entertainers, artists and sports heroes—for fear that they would also reject me, although I know in my logical mind that all celebrities are not the same. You would think that a writer would appreciate someone who is dying to meet them with one of their books in hand. But the truth is, true heroes are hard to find.
The Poetry King
“Oh, I want to meet him,” I pleaded to his literary agent.
“Can you introduce me to the number-one poetry king?”
I was so excited, I couldn’t be happier in the moment,
Never met a notable prize winner this close up before.
Oh, the metaphors, they just can’t describe how I feel inside;
Hyperboles and similes can’t express this magnificent occasion.
I’m bubbling over, my cheeks a-glow, the heavens are opening wide.
I’m a chocolate-covered banana split, an overflowing ice-cream soda.
In the din of the noisy auditorium, his admirers clamor at his feet,
I squeeze through the crowd to touch the material on his sleeve.
I get close enough, stick out my humble hand for him to grasp.
I call out: “Read your latest—Starry Sunshine! It was the best!”
“It was even better than Spinning Saturn—I read that twice!
You deserve the Pulitzer, the Nobel or any other literary award.”
“I worship you more than Zeus sitting on his golden throne!” I cried.
“You’re a genius, poet laureate of the moon and the sun—the greatest of all time!”
“I’m so pleased to meet you,” I said, with a slight quiver of the lip.
Extended my shaky hand again for him to see, this time all five fingers spread.
I imagined us having a coffee together, even a beer at a local saloon;
An inspiring conversation about beauty and lust from a Walt Whitman reincarnate.
But my hand remained unshaken; it stayed extended for hours it seemed
In the crowded but lonely room, I stood. A fan betrayed, a bromance ended.
The Poetry King
© 2017 Mark Tulin