For I say unto you, my child, if thou art afraid to write a bad poem, thou shalt never write a good poem. And for every good poem that dances out under the sun, to the delight of the world, at least ten miserable monstrosities will lumber forth from the same pen.
I have heard your heart, oh my child. You have said in your heart, "If I send forth bad poetry, I shall be flamed, yea even flame-broiled, upon the newsgroups, and upon the email lists, and in the chat rooms, and even unto the web-pages of the writers, I shall be flamed. Therefore I will send forth no bad poetry, that I be not flamed upon the newsgroups and the email lists and the chat rooms and the web-pages of the writers."
And I say unto thee, my child, "Fat chance." For thou shalt be flamed upon the newsgroups, and upon the email lists, and within the chat rooms, and even unto the web-pages; thou shalt be flamed whether thou mewlest like a kitten or roarest like a lion; thou shalt be flamed whether thou writest like William Blake or thou doest things like Rod McKuen.
Therefore, writest thou thy bad poetry, and send it forth. And writest thou thy good poetry, and send it forth. And when they flamest thee, for whatever they flamest thee for, say unto them that flamest thee, "Please speakest thou more, for I have just washed my hair and it is not yet dry upon my head."
(to be continued)