Bogen Today and Tomorrow (My World and Welcome to It 31)

Greetings one and all. Yes, the book came out. And I am pleased and gratified. Exhausted, but quite happy. April in addition to being the cruelest month (as T.S. Eliot would say) is also National Poetry Month and so in April every state, municipality, library, foundation, school and what-not fall all over themselves to do something poetic. This, can be a good thing, however, it would be nice if they would spread it out over the rest of the year. This April I have suffered from an embarrassment of riches. The city of West Hollywood decided to promote the poets of Los Angeles by featuring some of them on electronic billboards on two sites: one on the corner of Santa Monica Blvd and La Brea and the other on the Sunset Strip near the Roxy. I am honored to say that my profile and a line from one of my poems (Detective Supremo: And suddenly the bougainvillea greet you like a happy extortionist) appears on the same boulevard that I used to cruise in college with my boyfriend. It feels like a “if they could see me now” experience.

The concept of poetry as profession happened by chance I guess. Perhaps I was too stubborn or just outlasted the others. What do I mean by that? Well, I just never stopped doing it. 40+ years on.

I’ve seen young people sprout up with passion and attack the written word. But if it doesn’t come easily or relatively soon, they give up. There is also life that gets in the way. My life is an unusual one, I admit. I like the idea of people but I don’t like people themselves in specific. I am an excellent friend, but I do not let anyone get too close. If I did, it would get in the way of my work — my poetry — and my life. I would rather be a poet than anything. Not a wife, nor a mother, nor president of the United States. That has been my choice, not one that most people — especially women — choose. A solitary life but my life of words.

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