Saturday, July 4, 2015

Asking Permission

Dick my boss told me decades ago
        "Easier to ask for forgiveness
              than for permission"
as we spent millions of
     dollars of
someone else's taxes
      without asking
only telling

Today authors jobs
       tough as nails
 'cause every word  or lyric's
        been hashtagged before
and our job to twist them
         to make our own

With 17 million books
       on Amazon today
over 300k published new
and that's just here

With tweets and captions and bon mots and sayings
       quips and quotes and sound bites galore
who could ever be sure
       it hasn't been said before

I can't

So Google is best bud, my pal, my friend

And when I find
      words from someone else
I want to ask permission

But none tell you how
      not even a tweet
how to obtain
       a Right to Use
so I can make a few bucks
       using mostly mine
and fewness of their's

Writing letters to the Editor
       the Times called and asked
for sources –
       never did in past editions

Publishers and editors
       demand the same
every one
       before they'll print

When once found
       these original sources
only delay response
       perhaps emails back and forth

"How many words (do you intend to use)?
        and they have hidden magic price lists
they won't share

"Six bucks per copy
       for 3,000 words."
And I don't know
       if Mister King or
only Simon & Shuster
       keeps the dough

And the delay
       rather than money
kills the project
       unless self-published

So that's just what I'll do
       and to hell with you
who create deep bottomless
       hell pits

Sue my LLC if you
         care too

Original prose poem by Rodney Richards 7-4-15
Author's note: Based on true stories

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