In our column Poetry Rx, readers write in with a specific emotion, and our resident poets—Sarah Kay, Kaveh Akbar, and Claire Schwartz—take turns prescribing the perfect poems to match. This week, Kaveh Akbar is on the line.
I’m a young artist and writer—twenty-two, just graduated, and starting out on a professional career. I’m having some success: a few group shows, a couple publications, and a few readings in small spaces. For this, I am incredibly grateful. I try to celebrate these accomplishments and not continue to fall into the trap of berating myself for “not doing enough.” That being said, last night, a close friend and I read at an event to which four people showed up, the host of the series included. I got a lot of apology texts, and I understand. I, too, have had hard days and not been able to show up for other people. But the number of these excuses, and the silence, from a great number of other close friends has been a little disappointing.
I’ve got a few solid friends that are forever supportive, but they’re spread across continents now. I am grateful for all of these people, too, but how do I celebrate my accomplishments when the people around me don’t seem interested in celebrating with me?
Forced to Toot My Own Horn Read More