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Creative Commons - The Life of a Poem

uploaded: Fri, Aug 6, 2010 @ 2:25 AM
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Creative Commons - The life of a poem

I wrote a poem and it seemed okay
So I showed it to a couple of friends
Who said “It’s great! Send it off”
for publication on the printed page.

I sent my poem to a journal or three
I didn’t get a response and my poem
Never came back to me
But three months later…
A curt rejection letter arrived in the mail.

I read the poem at a poetry reading
There was a large audience and people paid
To get through the door
But I didn’t get a cent
Just a couple of nods, some applause
And one Bravo!

Someone said “Can I have a read?”
So I handed over the neatly typed A4 page
“Hey!” he said “You don’t have one of those thingamy’s…
The c in a circle….at the bottom of your work…
Make sure you do that….cause someone might…
Steal it”
“Thanks” said I, and walked away.

I got a reply from an online journal
Saying they’d be “delighted” to publish my poem
In their forthcoming issue…please send us a photo
And a bio…and by the way,
“We can’t pay you. Sorry, we don’t have the funding”
“Thanks” said I, and walked away.

Then I had a great idea.
I collected all the unpublished poems
(some had even won awards)
And put together a poetry collection.
I even found a publisher who agreed
To a short print run
But “By the way…we don’t do distribution
…you gotta do that yourself”
I even get a royalty
At 12.5 per cent of the recommended retail price
That’s less than $2.50 per copy
Who gets the other 87.5%?
“Oh”… “there are costs”
… “and overheads”.

The short print run sells about 50 copies
I make just over a hundred dollars
…and spend it on copies
I give away.

I have a bright idea of mixing poetry with music
Poetry with music…it will sell!
I can’t find a composer I can afford.
Some musician friends back me at a free gig
The poem with music gets applause
But I take it home later and stuff it in the bottom drawer.

Until that is…
Creative Commons - the licence of choice
And sites online where artists are free to share
And there are no expensive composers
To stop you in your tracks
You show me yours
I’ll show you mine
And if it fits together
We’ve created something new
You help me and I’ll help you
And the audience is global
Not just down at the local
There’s respect for vision
And recognition of skill
And the money doesn’t matter
Because it never did
We can share our creations by Facebook
Twitter and Blog
We can render them to video
And display them on you tube
There are links everywhere
When you’re free to share
And the poems and scores
Arise from the bottom drawers
And breathe the music
And mix with the mixters
Creativity lives when you’re free to share
Now there are invitations to workshops
And talk of a CD – with the right licence
Creative Commons – licence of choice.

"Creative Commons - The Life of a Poem"
by debbizo

2010 - Licensed under
Creative Commons
Attribution Noncommercial (3.0)

Click here for how to give credit and other conditions.