His only problems
are the three devils in his coffee:
critic, craver and crowd-pleaser
trained like vipers on his craft.
If they can’t get him to eat a cookie
he’ll eat his own work
he’ll not work at all even
or offer up swill as fine ale to the bar crowd.
Any of which keeps him
off the blade of his solo becoming
a servent, bent in skill at the anvil
of another’s pain-story
Now taking exquisite shape
in the luminous white heat
that is the blacksmith’s only lamplight.
Praise from hell, high or heathen
does not tempt him then–
he wanders out at day’s end, happy
to rest, eat and pray.