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Published December 2, 2018

Poetry by Andrew Blair
(Musselburgh, East Lothian, Scotland)

How To Be a Poet

How To Be a Poet

by Andrew Blair

Live and breathe poetry.
Shred pamphlets and inhale
Turn your lungs concrete,
Every exhalation iambic.
For a contemporary twist
Try printing out YouTube.

The point?
The point is art.
You need to make art.

Place microphones around your flat, your workplace, your soul.
Place microphones around the paths you tread,
Everywhere you go: microphones.
Everywhere you do not go: microphones.
Set them to record
Everything is up for grabs.
Everything is fodder.
The point is art. You need to make art.

To make art
You need feeding. Genius steals.
Be aware. Be keen. The scene loves it.
Listen to your recording of everything.
Strip it of all flesh.
Blast the bones with high pressure hoses.
Remove every morsel.
The point is art. You need to make art.

You do not have to ask for permission.

Listen to absolutely everything.
If any of it is any good
Write it down.
Try to mishear as often as possible.
It gives you agency.

Publish publish publish!
Soak your tomes in the juice of a lime
And sccccrrrunch them.
Twist and shape them until they can pierce the body.

The point?
The point is art.


by Andrew Blair

Undear the sea.
Fuck the middle distance.
Launch coastal walks into the sun.
Save the whales, but only to lure them into a false sense of security
In the style of Ramsay Bolton. Then turn the insides of the whales
Into luxury student accommodation. Halls of Jonahs beneath the Western
Staring balefully through the blow holes at the stars.
Raze the stars to the ground.
Cast picnics into the abyss.
Let the waves lap at the shoreline free of playing children
But replete with a smugness as of the well fed.
Give peace a chance for revenge.
Feel nothing beneath your bare toes.
Scream lullabies.
Imagine the falling water is alive.
Rock your alarm clock in your arms
Until it no longer cries.

Andrew Blair is an award-winning writer/performer living in Musselburgh.
He co-produces the
Poetry as F*ck podcast, and has had work published
Gutter and Valve Journals. His work has been nominated for a Saboteur
Award, and his debut collection -
An Intense Young Man at an Open Mic
- is available now through House of Three Press.
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