The R-Word Question
Some magazines attract all year
Submissions in a ceaseless flow –
The odd craft brew, but much small beer,
To which the answer must be . . . No.
If what is offered fails to please,
It seems too harsh a term, reject,
Applied to work of brain and keys
Although commendably direct,
For smoothing exit through the door
When unimpressed by cherished lines
And stopping senders feeling sore
Why not regretfully declines?
Too dry and formal nowadays?
Perhaps pass on would fill the bill,
A fairly inoffensive phrase
To sugar coat the bitter pill?
Blame Covid as the reason why
There’s simply not now space enough
And pop in backlog to imply
Unpublished stocks of stellar stuff . . . ?
Or, rather, worry not a bit
About a writer’s wounded pride?
“Too long! A lack of point and wit!
You clearly haven’t read our Guide!”

Jerome Betts

If you have any thoughts about this poem,  Jerome Betts would be pleased to hear them