Poetism Commentary: “my pathetic attempt”

The poem in question: my pathetic attempt

Originally titled, “my pathetic attempt to tell you how much,” This is one of those silly poems that you write for a girl.  You know that kind?  Yeah.

The poem is dated 11/3/97, but I’m pretty sure the original pre-dates that by a few months.  I do have the original text, which I’ll post below.

The girl I was dating at the time (the second one from A Lesson To Be Learned) used to tell me that I had a way with words, and I would joke, “Yeah, maybe sideways,” and thus the first stanza.

The first part of third stanza is an obvious homage to (read: blatant ripoff of?) “Closer to Free” by the BoDeans.

Ultimately, this is just a sappy love poem that I’m sure I meant with all my heart when I wrote it.  After breaking up with this girl I made a resolution that I wouldn’t write any more stupid love poems for girls.  Of course I broke it with the next girl that dated.

The original, even more sappy, version is reprinted below.  It has a few extra lines, and a few changed lines.  I like the “official” version better.

my pathetic attempt to tell you how much

a way with words?
don’t I wish
yeah, maybe sideways
whatever works, I guess

love knows no bounds
I love you
is that enough?
so much to say
such a miniscule vocabulary

everybody wants respect
you’ve got mine
everybody needs a chance
as many as you need
they’re yours
ask and ye shall receive

who needs it?
hope you do
cause you’ve got mine

wish sideways was good enough
maybe it will be
just this once

Actually, reading over the two versions again, the differences in the third and fourth stanzas change the tone of the poem.  Interesting.

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