Lake Nowhere Delta (an American Mammoth Jackstock jennet). She lives at Lake Nowhere Mule and Donkey Farm in Tennessee.
I can only blame this poem on random word prompts (I think, because I don’t know what else would have triggered it). Oh, and maybe I can also blame my lifelong fascination for words with multiple, confusable meanings. Those are fun. Dialogue is fun, and no matter how old I get, I guess talking animals are too. I don’t really trust myself to feature them well in my major writing projects. Closest I came was “The Brave Little Porcupine” (unpublished children’s story). For poems, I give myself permission to goof off.
The following is a goofball rolled out of my brain circa age twenty:
“Good day to you, ass.”
“To my ass?!” cried the donkey,
“What mad man are you
To address my behind?”
“I meant you,” said the passer.
“I thought ‘ass’ was your name.”
“It’s Haw,” said the donkey,
“Family surname for years.”
“Hee Haw,” said the passer,
“I’m desperately sorry.”
“You know my first name,”
Hee brayed and went crazy:
“Spying and lying,
I’m shocked at you, sir!
Don’t you fear that I’ll stamp you flat?”
“You bet your ass,” said the passer.
My automatic coping method for most stressful situations in my life has always been distraction. Get my head out of whatever has upset me and focus entirely on something else. This usually means I’m not rooted in reality anymore: I’ve escaped into a story. Growing up, I read fiction or – heaven forbid – gave in to the TV Blare (I’ve been a book-loving snob about a lot of movies, but quality story-telling can be hunted down on the screen).
Now that I’m a fantasy writer, there’s no hope of changing. I’ve heard some people do manic cleaning when they’re stressed. Wouldn’t that be awesome for aftermath? You have a rough day and you have a clean house to show for it? I call that someone who knows how to cope with reality.
Fantasy’s worst reputation is probably the Big Let Down once you come back to earth. You become dissatisfied with the possible, while the impossible torments you with its appeal. Although there’s some truth in that, I honestly don’t know what I’d do for excitement without other worlds in my head. Probably try to go on real-life adventures and accumulate a far more impressive record of injuries (the worst injury I’ve ever had is a sprained pinkie finger; I’m not even kidding).
In any case, I recognized the paradox circa age fifteen, and here is the poem:
Intriguing, enhancing, appealing
Imagination, creativity—lies, delusion
Disappointing, confusing, distracting