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Poets are Present: J.D. Smith

Poets are Present is a poetry residency in conjunction with David Ives’s adaptation of The Metromaniacs. As part of this unique theatre/poetry exchange, the Shakespeare Theatre Company is proud to host more than 30 D.C.-area poets in the theatre’s lobby. Throughout the run, we will share with you the poems that this residency inspired our guests to write. Visit our Poets are Present page to see a list of upcoming poets.

J.D. Smith,  Saturday, February 7FullSizeRender

J.D. Smith’s third collection, LaborDay at Venice Beach, was published in 2012, and in 2007 he was awarded a Fellowship in Poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts. His other books include the humor collectionNotes of a Tourist on Planet Earth (2013) and the children’s book The Best Mariachi in the World (2008). He works in Washington, DC, where he lives with his wife Paula Van Lare.

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Twitter: @Smitroverse


After the Farce

I’d like to write a poem about a play
To honor both the actors and their lines.
But what, with many choices, should I say

Of schemers thrust into a frantic fray
Where everyone, on someone, has designs?
I’d like to write a poem about a play

In which the players juggle an array
Of fumbled messages and misread signs.
But what, with many choices, should I say

Once rhyme leads reason hopelessly astray
And no one knows for whom he really pines?
I’d like to write a poem about a play

That makes its lovers take a winding way
Until each fated pair of hearts combines.
But what, with many choices, should I say?

Some want to raise the airiest soufflés
And pair them with the rarest choice of wines.
I’d like to write a poem about a play,
But what, with many choices, should I say?

–J.D. Smith
Poets are Present. February 7, 2015.


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