I dreamed I could write, day or night, but when I went to school, I learned
I was a fool, because to my surprise, I couldn’t pull words from the sky.
Writing wasn’t as easy as knocking on wood like I thought it would.
Living alone, without a wife or even a dog,
love and companionship were unknown.
I understood why J. D. Salinger, even though
everyone knew his name, became a recluse.
After class, I’d go home to write, but would sleep
And dream how sad life could be because I read
Within my dreams, famous now-dead authors,
Like Hemingway, Steinbeck, and Mailer came
Alive with advice on how to write.
Though famous as writers, not one of the three
Thrilled me as Kesey did when he arrived in a dream
and we’d get high and travel to planets and stars
And when awake and not asleep, memories
of the story, Kesey wrote stay, and feelings emerge
that gives me an urge to strangle Nurse Ratched.
I moved to California where I believed someone would understand me
and get paid for what I wrote. All I accomplished on that
Hollywood dream was a nightmare when I was Mexican, and
Fante told me to eat the dust.
But Thompson came along and chased Fante from
My dream. Thompson told me the fear he once felt
had been assuaged. So we went to Las Vegas with
pockets full of psychedelics carried from some distant
heaven so we could enjoy our Vegas trip.
But I awoke in my California bed with the moon overhead.
I thought it had all been a dream until I went for coffee
and met a man who said, “Stop dreaming and get to work”.
I’ll never stop ,” I told the stranger. “The night is made
for dreaming, so don’t be rude when you know that’s my job.”
“Now you got it,” he said. “It’ll be okay if you write about your
dreams every day and don’t just daydream your life away.
“Why are you so uptight?” I asked, as I tip-toed across the floor.
“I’m not uptight when I see a meteor in the night, I know I’m Updike,”
he said and turned away after I requested he stay.
Below the starry night, I’m uptight and hold my breath while I pray that
upon some magic star, talent will arrive from the sky to make me comparable
to Updike or like other writers who have appeared in my dreams.