Scott Laudati


they all want to be artists
they change their majors
from psychology
to sculpting
they change later
from sculpting
to economics
their parents say get a job
save money
you can work your art out on the weekends
most give in
get the job
they sleep around in their twenties
they get pregnant
sometimes for love
usually by accident
they get promoted
they become their refrigerator

some stay on
move to the dominican neighborhoods
move to the outer boroughs
keep hustling
always one contact away from the big gallery
thinking they made the sacrifice
art owes them now
one day it will happen

but it doesn’t
or when it does
it’s just too late
too much time happened
to question, playing
the ultimate gamble
with no chance to return
and get it right
or rewind
and try again

but they bet their life
and the ashtrays never emptied
and the bottles never corked
and they left something behind
good or bad
they wrote their own epitaphs
and the graveyards
and libraries
and art galleries
all filled
because the artist lived
and the artist left something behind.
but whether the dream
was lived out
or sold out
it’s hard to see a family
on a blanket under a free sky
every july 4th
or around a christmas tree every december
or taking a picture
with mickey mouse in the florida summer
and argue
that the love that shares your name
is the only art
worth waking up for