Tuesday, June 12, 2018


image borrowed from mysuperpost.com


“The older I get, the surer I am that I am not running
the show.”--Leonard Cohen

Ah, the Liberal Arts--
I was always better at them
then science or math;
writing, painting, & acting
were joyful pursuits.

Of course, most of us who
     chose Art to pursue, found out,
          unfortunately, that the arts as avocation 
                  are grand, but our hubris consisted of a 
          perceived need to transcend our amateur 
       status; believing that only when we  
were paid for our gifts could our
creativity be legitimate.

But nothing is more fickle than the arts when
                   it comes to making a living;
                   it is true that our narcissism,
self adulation and ego            are satiated,
                   as Creativity blossoms like
                   a field of poppies in Spring;
all passionate red and intoxicating--
yet the dark day usually arrives
when our side job becomes
our primary income.

I believe that there is a beautiful bravery
about those of us who became
professionals,       who roped the dream,
                             who embraced fantasy.

I gave a decade to Art, and then thirty years to
teaching, discovering that serving others was much
more satisfying than just serving my self. I know 
that Art is essential to the human experience, just
as necessary as technology, science, or commerce.
More’s the pity that patrons are few, and success
is elusive & fleeting.              

Art as a muse is
fine, but she can be a bitch;
so beware her smile.

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at dVerse Poets Pub


Frank Hubeny said...

Good point: "serving others was much
more satisfying than just serving my self" Good advice.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Glen, I love this. I believe the online poetry community has given we poets the support and appreciation of our work that we might not otherwise have found. I know it has been a wonderful avenue for me. I am also so glad you taught for so long, likely spreading the love of poetry and literature to many young hearts and minds. Way to go!

Grace said...

How fortunate you are to find your calling of serving others Glenn ~ And art as a true profession is only my dream and the dream of others ~ I admire those who can give all their energy and passion to it ~ Cheers ~

Mark Walters said...

Man, that is powerful! Your love was fickle; she always disappoints. You learned; your life was not wasted. A wonderful truth!

Sumana Roy said...

How cleverly you've summed up Art in the end. Poppy blossom is a perfect image working magic here.

Kim Russell said...

The haiku says it all, Glenn!

annell said...

Your words are true, as far as they go. Still, that is something to be said, for the artist who stays in the studio, quietly serving others making another world visible, when no one knows, without a pay check... but you are right, the world needs what the artist has to say. so the artist has to find his way.

brudberg said...

So true... and also remember how often the really successful are also the saddest... let art be a passion but try to live elsewhere.

Kate Mia said...

Lord Art
More than any
Other Profession True iN LiGHT
When Served NoW More as Free..
without any
any thing aT all
But A Joy NoW of
Doing Art GiVinGSHaRinG totAlly Free
i supPose may be an only True Art
Freedom oF LiFE NoW
For those
Who Direct
And Produce
A Play iN Give And
Share Freer For all They Act ArT aS NoW..
True Days oF Dickinson Drawers No Longer Be..:)

Mish said...

OH the haiku made me grin. I'm happy that you were able to pursue the passion but still live a dream of nurturing minds. So nice to see you, Glenn. Thanks for joining in.

lillianthehomepoet.wordpress.com said...

Oh Glenn.......may I first say, I've been mostly "away" from dVerse for about a month....travels and company...and just getting back now to my morning delight of coffee in one hand, writing and reading. But....may I say....before our last short trip I suddenly noticed that I'd been missing seeing you here. I missed your westerns....your sage voice....your pithy posts....your words, my friend. So...you may have been here during my short hiatus...but do note.....I am so so glad to see your name here again on the dVerse role! :)
And that all said....this post made me smile. I LOVE the haiku at the end...adding your inevitable humor and take on the words you've shared.
I also loved the truth in your post. I suspect you were a wonderful teacher for your students...heck, you are here for your dVerse readers! :) And I do so agree: the arts are critical. In our recent month in DC, with the goal of doing everything free, we toured the Kennedy Center. I was reminded of the commitment to the arts the Kennedys had...of the wonderful performances and awards given with the Obamas and other presidents sitting in the Kennedy Center balconies. And sadly, so sadly, seeing now the seeming lack of commitment to the arts by this administration. It seems to me there is a "life force" within music, plays, paintings, photography etc. I recently went to my grandaughter's ballet recital -- she is smitten with dance and takes 3 lessons per week. I doubt she will become a professional dancer....but the love she has for dance now, will, I suspect, stay with her throughout her life. The grace dance is providing her long limbs...it was a joy to see. So thank you my friend....for this wonderful post...and SO glad to see you here!