Back at the Ballard Market
Made my second trip back to the Ballard Market this summer.
I’m always in awe of poets persisting in their craft and striving to earn a living. the Ballard Market has a couple of regulars who do just that.
Seven and Elliot show up for work with their manual typewriters and their signs that read: “Poems: Your Topic. Your Price.”
They are the improvisational performance artists of the poetry world. If you engage one of them, they will tell you to name a topic and then give them a few minutes.
When you return from sampling the goat cheese and perusing the organic vegetables, they will have a short poem to your theme.
I asked Elliot to write about writer’s block (since that is a topic close to my heart!) Here is his effort:
That’s pretty insightful. I couldn’t do that on such short notice! I love the insight about “the voyage inside.”
Elliot told us that he can make some decent money “on a good day.” But, then there are other days when the take is not so good.
I shared my favorite Hayden Carruth haiku with him. The one about the Japanese haiku master Basho.
Basho, you made
A living writing haiku?
Wow! Way to go, man!
I’m always happy to see poets making a go of it.