I am tired of submitting to your beauty
as I am tired of submitting to the endless
magazines online nothings & hand-stapled
& their editors
careless with their editing
& careful only when
positioning their mirrors
to watch themselves masturbate
over some perfect storm – themselves
endless revolving pixelated platitudes
to set developing hearts
of teenage girls aflame
like industrial sabotage
& burn their neuroses
in a blood-forest fire replenishing
to hold them
warm & burning
in the grip
I wonder how much of my time has been spent in outrage; in the knee-jerk rage that accompanies refusal – how much longer has been lost to the crushed apathy that accompanies each refusal? The worst part, and anyone will tell you this, is when you don’t hear anything back. When you are left in the void; the complete silence.
It is easy to fall into the trap of self-pity; to blame the times, the changing tastes, the rising of marginalised voices pushing; it would be so easy to lament my failures as the universe bending towards justice, as too long have people of my gender and my race and my sexuality been awarded every advantage in the world.
Fortunately, I am able to distance myself from these complaints. I understand why the void continues to grow, and the refusal emails settle about my desk more than ever. Editors can smell frauds, and I am a fraud; they can see the whiskey hovering above my mask, as I strike the pose of Thomas Wolfe, of Dylan Thomas, of Baudillaire and Lawrence and all the rest. I am sick and tired of my submissions.