I Wish I Was a Poet

A Poem by Jeffrey Hampton

I wish I was a poet,
but instead I am a pianist.
With no rhyme schemes…
No clever plots…

Struggling, hoping for an inspired line
or five. Devilishly working,
but I made no deal with
the Devil for words.

My soul was cheap, plucking
notes out that I read on paper,
written by others—
a courageous farce.  

I wish I was a poet,
but instead I am a pianist.
I was told as a boy I had gifts,
a garden full to nurture.

Nature versus nurture…

Nurturing verses was my nature.
Though, never simple, a variety of 
flora and fauna grew in my garden. 
Each needed tending, and
I didn’t heed the care of that flower, 
letting petals wilt. Touching a
beautiful wild rose would taint 
its joyful yield.
Or so I thought…

I wish I was a poet,
but instead I am a pianist.
Graceful facility, turn of phrase, wordless.
Feelings of a divine spark coursing through. 

Poetry did come easy to me—
spinning tales from the existential nothing on the page.
Black dots made more sense than
Love’s language lost.

Did I use existential right?
I am not sure…

I guess it doesn’t matter…

For I am not a poet, 
but instead a pianist.

Jeffrey Hampton is a pianist and educator, having went to school for piano performance at Indiana State University. He splits his time performing as well as teaching privately out of his home studio, finding time to write when he can. He currently lives in Vincennes, Indiana, with his wife, Cahtlyn.

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