To a Frustrated Poet: poetry podcast #7

For today’s poetry podcast, I’m reading a poem that really resonates with me right now—it’s about the struggle between being a creative person and having a “day job.” This poem will give you a little laugh, if you’ve ever had to work at a job that didn’t really reflect your true self.

The poem is called “To a Frustrated Poet” by R.J. Ellmann, and I found it in the book Good Poems for Hard Times, a collection selected by Garrison Keillor. I did not have any luck finding out anything about this poet—this is the first time I’ve heard of him or her. If you know anything about R.J. Ellmann, please do let me know in a comment.

First, a view of the woods for the frustrated poet:

And the podcast:

{press arrow to play podcast}
{please let me know if you have any technical difficulties}

Another poem I mention in the podcast is the very famous poem “This Is Just to Say” by William Carlos Williams. Click on the title above to read it.

Enjoy!

{listen to previous podcasts}

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3 Responses to “To a Frustrated Poet: poetry podcast #7”


  1. 1 Mike McLaren January 30, 2010 at 12:33 am

    I’ve never heard of R.J. Ellman, but it was a fun poem. William Carlos Williams is one of my favorites.

  2. 2 Kerri January 31, 2010 at 1:16 am

    Oh this poem is so for me! I work 40 hours a week at a job that does not suit me at all and all I do all day is wish I could leave! I know exactly what you mean about having to be someone else. I work with preschoolers and I spend all my time pretending to be patient and loving (which is incredibly draining) and try not to look like I want to run screaming from the building! My contract there runs out at the end of February and so now I have to look for another job that I do not want to do. Oh dear, sometimes it all seems completely impossible to deal with.

  3. 3 Geoff M. Pope February 2, 2010 at 5:52 am

    I just forwarded this podcast to my aspiring chef wife (who works full-time for a telecommunications co.), my artist sister (who recently lost her job with a flighty filmmaker), and a graphic-designer friend (who left Microsoft). Thank you for creatively sharing here, for committing to these podcasts. Your voice is clearly NOT frustrated when reading and being taken away with these two poems you’ve chosen. I look forward to listening to and savoring more of your recordings.

    Assuming you have a degree in English or Art, have you worked at or applied to any small colleges? Adjunct pay alone can be disheartening, but I’ve found that teaching three courses (two online), enhanced by some freelance editing, frees me up to be much less Geoffrustrated.


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Hello there! My name is Nicole K. Docimo, and I am an artist and writer from the U.S.A. but currently residing in Zurich, Switzerand. Thank you for visiting my blog!

Some Thoughts

"Be thirsty for the ultimate water,
and then be ready for what will
come pouring from the spring."
~Rumi

{from "Joy at Sudden Disappointment"
translated by C. Barks.}

~This Work ~

Unless otherwise noted, all images and writings on this blog were created by me, Nicole K. Docimo aka Blue Bicicletta. If you would like to share anything you see here for inspirational purposes online, I just ask that you kindly let folks know where you found it. If you are wanting to share/reproduce any of my work in any other way, or have any questions about how you will be sharing the work in relation to copyright, please contact me directly at nkdocimo {at} gmail {dot} com. Thanks!

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