Grammarly is usually the editor
I never have for fiction.
As long as I don't get fancy,
I can work with the AI in essays.
For poetry, it's mom's backseat driving.
Every end of a line is driving off a cliff,
unusual capitalizations questioned,
diction UNDER FIRE.
"Even well-read people don't understand,
so you should choose a more familiar word."
Well, Grammarly, this one is self-explanatory,
and IF they pick up a dictionary: it's loaded.
I've long since passed the college days
playing with Microsoft Word thesaurus.
Microsoft Word says I didn't pay: but I did.
Too tired to take it up to good-old Bill Gates.
AS SOON as Microsoft became a subscription
I WAS WARNED by customer support: not worth it.
They said, "try Grammarly Plus," so here I am:
dealing with my mom's backseat driving.
In the end, I'm still subscribing.
Now, I HAVE no formatting tools.
I have NO IDEA where they save my files.
Yet, I find this transaction amusing.
Like mom can be annoying, helpful, and cute,
I wake at 2 a.m., and Grammarly's AI is there.
I don't have to wait a week for feedback
and I'm getting better with "the human touch."
Now, I'm pretentious like that unfamiliar word,
but maybe there's a reason for that too.
Writing has been Very solitary & Very public:
each poet must find balance in the enigmatic.
Other writers scoff at the separation:
poets are people who laugh at grammar.
This is correct but also incomplete:
we laugh at rules working "all the time."
Yes, I make MANY unintentional mistakes,
(which is why I have my mom & Grammarly)
but we all love the written word uniquely
and cannot help but express it in SOME way.
It's a sign of my immaturity, perhaps.
When I finish writing poetry: I still rhyme.
I handed in an essay Freshman year that did:
pretty sure the TA gave me an A-.
But even in my Senior year, a clear opinion
accumulated across my studies in New York.
Each Professor proclaimed the ability
to tell when a Poet wrote prose.
This was NOT ALWAYS an insult:
it was always, partially, praise.
After ALL, professors pick the books
& there are fewer ***** looks at textbooks.
Here's a bolder claim: THINK of the possibilities!
I can tell if a Poet wrote Legalese.
Legally binding on several different levels,
moving, symbolic, AND aesthetically pleasing!
I had a dream to be like Homer.
I realized the market didn't want that.
Here's to 2021 with no word-program
and a 3 a.m. artificial editor that's like my mom.
I haven't been posting here lately, but this poem seemed appropriate for other poets. Most recently, you can find me if you search Dan J Cuzzo on Medium.