Saturday, February 7, 2009

Featured Writer: Doug Draime Day 2

Burning The Complete Works of Sylvia Plath

The suicidal Muse ran up and
down my walls screaming for
Sylvia Plath. It wasn’t my
Muse; it came with her. She warned
me about something like this
happening if my writing
became too positive or
encouraging. So, I called her
“Look,” I said, “it’s running up and
down my walls screaming for
Sylvia Plath.”

“Calm down,” she said, “just turn the typewriter
off and it’ll stop.”

“What?” I said.

“Turn the Corona off and it’ll stop.” she said

The Smith Corona was a gift from her when my ancient
Remington bit the dust. I told her to hold on a minute and
went over and turned off the machine. She was right, the
thing just disappeared with a puff of smoke. Back on the
phone, I told her it worked. She was silent for a moment.

“What are you going to do now,” she asked.

“What do you mean?” I said.

“Well, I mean, you got the thing stirred up
somehow and now every time you turn
the typewriter on the Muse is going to get
out and cause havoc. Each time it gets worse.”

“No shit?” I said, shocked.

“No shit!” she replied.

I thought for a moment. “Will burning the
Complete Works Of Sylvia Plath work?”

She was thinking now. “Well, you could give that
a try, probably wouldn’t hurt to burn all the Ted
Hughes stuff while you’re at it.”

“Thanks I appreciate the help,” I said and hung up.

I didn’t have the Complete Works Of Sylvia Plath
and nothing by Hughes, so I went out and bought
them. When I got home I went outside, threw them
in an empty trash can and was about to torch them
when something like a spiritual revelation hit me.
I grabbed the Complete Works Of Sylvia
Plath out of the trash can and ran inside, turned on
my oven and baked her with the oven door open for
an hour. Then I gingerly took the smoldering books,
holding them with a pot holder, outside and threw them
in the trash can with her former old man, and torched
them good. I watched the books burn to ashes, then
emptied the ashes in my septic tank. I felt something
lifting from me and I knew it was over.

I went in and turned on the machine. It purred
like a kitten. I waited for a moment and then
typed my first line: The Suicidal Muse ran up
and down my walls screaming for Sylvia Plath.

*Reprinted from Doug's book: Transmissions From The Underground
Watch for it at deadbeatpress sometime in February 2009.

1 comment:

shootsandvines said...

Doug, I love your work and feel I was neglected as child by not seeing it in my libraries. You will be one of the first poets I introduce to my oldest son when he gets older. I have this dream that he'll have to write a report in high school lit, and it will be all about you.

You are a great guy to work with, on top of being a fantastic writer.

Much love, Crystal