Once artists realized they could just rape the audience, it was all over. Jackson Pollock shot his wad on the face of the nation and that was that.
Writing on the other hand, still relied on the ancient art of seduction. The reader deciding to let the the author in or not and if so, how deeply. Its amazing when you think of it, how many intimate lovers Whitman, Rilke, and Rimbaud had over the years. Even the awkward, trembling Poe was simple, yet charming enough to terrorize everyone from skid row to royalty. Terrorized’em right down to the marrow. Seduction, pure and simple.
When I was younger I tried to write. I might as well stood on street corner and howled about injustice and love like some half-assed preacher. A few kind and kindred souls left change and politely took leaflets, but most everyone scurried away. Then one day, a shuffling old man with a mustache put his arm around me and smiled. He escorted me into a bar. We had a shot and a beer, he began telling sly jokes to the indifferent butcher pouring drinks. Within 10 minutes, the old man had the entire place gathered round him, laughing. All while he held a blood covered knife in plain site! Not one of them even noticed when he slipped it in. Or if they did, they didn’t mind. Laughing until they cried and vice-versa.
Later the old bastard taught me a few things about art too. “There’re always new killers, in every art form.” he’d smile. “They bleed out your bullshit and call on something deeper.”
Of course there are plenty of con artist entertainers with nothing to say. We went to see one down at the big theater, it was a packed house. Everyone laughed and had a nice time. But the audience seemed tired and listless as they spilled out into the streets. “Why didn’t he slip them the dagger?” I asked the old man. “The fella didn’t have one,” he replied. “Well then whats the fucking point?!” I howled. “Oh,” he smirked, “people will still pay good money for a good hand job.”