Danny Yee >> Poetry

I am a ___

Would you believe
that the "I am a ..." phrase
which I use the most (at least among friends!) is
"I am an anarchist",
"I am an anthropologist",
"I am a book-reviewer",
or anything so prosaic,

"I am a frog"?

(Sometimes expanded to
"I am a green frog".)

I have no idea
what you will make of that
(I don't think anyone knows what to make of that),
but you'll have to agree
it's a good thing
I am not a Zen Buddhist.

People are what they do, not what they say
(am I a behaviourist, too?)
and you haven't seen me do anything
except play gamelan and talk a lot:
Is it so surprising
that you mock
my apparently arbitrary self-ascription?
Which brings me to
the whole point of this exercise -
to convince you

I am not a poet.

May 1995

Poetry << Danny Yee