There were spontaneous patrons of the arts lined up down the street and others watching. I watched him type a poem on his manual typewriter, proof it, and hand it to a young woman in exchange for two dollars. Profitable? Maybe with some refined marketing it could be.
The tag line on his business card reads “It’s about music, not money.” These words are printed on a green background, the color of money, and several hundred dollar bills are pictured on the right side of the card.
“It’s not about money?” Please. It’s very much about money, and why not? Because if no money was exchanged I doubt he would be focusing on this particular endeavor on a sunny San Francisco Saturday afternoon.
Several months back I attended a packed poetry and wine pairing, a blue ocean strategy. I was introduced to one of the poets by my friend, the Sommelier of the event.
She said to me “There’s no money in poetry.” I thought. “Is she joking? Look around.”
The room was packed with enthusiastic people who paid $55 a head to attend this event and they vowed to return to the next event. There’s no reason that the poets couldn’t coordinate this for themselves.
Humanity always has, and always will, find value in poetry. And these two quick examples demonstrate that there IS money in poetry. And why shouldn’t there be? Because with money there’s more, time, energy, and focus to make “music.”