You don’t make the big bucks. In fact I have earned exactly $100 for one poem publication although I have been writing (and publishing) poetry seriously for ten/fifteen/mumble years. People look at you funny when you tell them you’re a poet, if you are indeed foolish enough to tell them. They tell you they hate, hate, hate poetry, and you have to bite your tongue in order not to tell them that you hate, hate, hate writers who can’t be bothered to read outside their comfort zone every once in a while.
But there are a few good things about it. I have learned that I can write a first-rate poem parody in approximately 5 minutes, a few minutes extra if it needs to rhyme or be in meter. This amuses DP (not to mention myself and possibly Sarah W.) for days.
You can out hipster anyone. I went to a former-dive, now-hipster bar near my grad school the other day. I can sneer at the hipsters. Sure you drink PBR and have cool glasses, but I am a poet. Top that for obscurity.
I can criticize the layout/line breaks in any kind of advertising copy with real authority.
Resumes are easy. Condense three years of experience into 25 words? Give me something hard to do. At least it doesn’t have to be in iambic pentameter.
What useless yet interesting talents do you have?