I Am Not a Poet

It’s inevitable, I believe, that just as you are approaching greatness you doubt yourself. You wonder if you’re good enough; if you have  what it takes; if you’re doing the right thing. These things have crossed my mind over the past couple of weeks.

I knew I wanted to be a writer when I was six years old. Over the years I’ve written everything from resumes to newsletter, blogs and poetry. While I’ve always considered myself a writer, it’s been a little difficult for me to don the title of poet.

I mean, I’m not like the poets you may think of. My style is too loose to be compared to the greats like Shakespeare and Keats. Those guys created structures that the rest of the world would follow for years. I’m also not one of the new age spoken word artists. I don’t speak with my hands when I talk; there’s no background music or incense burning. I’m not even a motivational tweeter. I don’t write for likes or wish for my words to become memes. So if you were categorizing me based on those standards, I am not a poet.

But I think about the artists and entrepreneurs I respect and none of them are like the rest. When i first started listening to E-40, I had no idea what he was talking about (and this is sad because I’m from the Bay). But when an E-40 track was played, it was always undeniable E-40. His voice, his language and his style stood out. When Allen Iverson stepped onto the basketball court, he not only looked different from everyone else with cornrows and tattoos, but he played different. he didn’t alter his style to be like everyone else. He played just as rough and on point as he did in his neighborhood.

So when I think of my writing I put it in the category of other. I realize I do not have to be THAT kind of poet to be respected for my poetry. I just have to speak from the heart and share the stories that only I can tell.

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