To Calliope, Erato, and Polyhymnia
Call it what you will –
The soul, the brain, the muse.
Give it a name and call out to it.
See if it comes running.
See if it gives you what you want.
Tell it to give you the lyrics
To the songs of the angels.
It will refuse you.
Tell it to give you the story of creation,
To show you how it feels to be a god,
To hold such power over words and ideas.
To this command, it will balk if it does not bite.
The muse is not man’s to command.
She is a quiet and fickle thing
You can bark at her, order her;
You can beg her, you can plead to her
But the muse doesn’t come when you tell her to.
She comes when you need her to.
When half-formed words are the only things holding you together