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.
Paulette Beete’s poems, fiction, and nonfiction have appeared in publications such as Crab Orchard Review, Rhino, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, and The Found Poetry Review, and the anthology Full Moon on K Street: Poems About Washington, DC. She also has published two poetry chapbooks: Blues for a Pretty Girl (Finishing Line Press) and Voice Lessons (Plan B Press). Beete holds an MFA from American University, where she was poetry editor and editor-in-chief of the literary journal Folio.
The Trouble with Love
By Paulette Beete
Love’s a blurry offprint. The heart cross-dressing:
gossamer for grime, gorgeousness for grit.
Love’s the heart unmoored, stumbling the streets
like a Greek tragedy. It’s comic gold
how it will make even a huffy scholar drunk
on aesthetic larks. Love is translation.
Love’s a mania turning the lackluster to lip-smacking
genius. The heart, intoxicated, clips the wings
of realism, heartily declares passion its new milieu.
Love’s a bankrupt ecosystem revived as the talk of the town.
Frankly, love’s a liar.
Author’s note: The text of this poem was found in the Asides material for The Metromaniacs. For me found poetry is an act of both translation and excavation, which seemed an appropriate way to respond to this particular play, which itself was translated and excavated from Alexis Piron’s original work. And really, who could pass up a chance to muck around with the words of David Ives, Michael Kahn, and Drew Lichtenberg? As for how true the poem is? Well, I suppose we won’t know that until The Metromaniacs, the sequel.