Goldman Sachs Arts Grants Online Application


After announcing our intention to donate millions to charity this week, Goldman offices were immediately besieged by requests from bohemian types for somewhat sad sums for “projects.”

Since we are deeply concerned about the welfare of America’s artistic communities, we are giving $500 million (more than three times the NEA’s annual budget, or the price of about 70 executive shower curtains) to artists and writers. Please stop calling our secretaries admin assistants and use the application below.

Name: Darcie Dennigan


__ Landscape painter (We are well aware that none of you are really landscape painters and that you’ve had it up to here with landscape painters, but no one wants your doom & gloom shit on their walls.)

__ Detective novelist.

_X_ Patriotic poet.

Work Sample: Actually, let’s not and pretend we did. Please continue to the next section.

The following section helps us measure your level of obliviousness.

I know what Goldman Sachs is:

__ 101 wild stallions.

__ The only surviving Carthaginian generals of the Punic Wars.

__ It has to do with money?

_X_ I don’t know exactly, but I did write Dana Gioia’s online bio for the Poetry Foundation (though they edited out my “ideas” on his politics and poetry), so I am practically halfway to an MBA, poetry-wise.

I am aware that corporations rule the world:

__ Shut up.

__ Clear Channel Communications’ broadcasts have never made it through the walls of my yurt.

__ I’m a terrible romantic who still believes in something that Obama can never be, but it’s not his fault.

_X_ “Yes, master,” quoth Antonin Scalia.

Personal Statement (please grovel and disclose personal financial matters):

A grant of $25,000 would be five courses I would not have to adjunct, or about a year’s worth of part-time work. Basically, it would be my life.

But maybe bartending is a more honest way? Maybe forget grants, maybe my poetry would be more real if I commandeered an old ice cream truck with my sister Sarah and converted it to a traveling crêpe operation (she would make them, and I would drive and eat a lot of Nutella)?

But if we’re really being honest, maybe I don’t write seriously enough yet to deserve this. And I will write whether you give me money or not, so in a way, I’m an asshole for even asking. Just give it to Haiti and be done with it. No, no—I’m slapping my own face as I write this—it’s ridiculous to think that any money going to the arts is money taken out of the hands of “worthier” causes.

Do you remember that scene in It’s a Wonderful Life where there’s a run on the bank and all the Bailey Building and Loan customers are demanding their savings from Jimmy Stewart? I’m not suggesting anybody is Mr. Potter in this situation (and if you, you little Goldman peon intern screening these applications on your Blackberry, realize that’s paralipsis, I’ll make sure my online check for $25.00 doesn’t bounce. Oh right. It won’t “bounce”—you’ll still get the money and I’ll be charged $800 in overdraft fees.) (Just kidding. I know Goldman’s not that kind of financial institution.) (Is it?)

Now please disclose your real reasons:

__ I am dizzy after Googling France’s arts and culture budget.

__ Corporations thwart democracy at every turn. (That’s not a reason. I just wanted to say that.)

__ In the words of Senator Charles Schumer, you, dear Goldman, have “a gusher of cash.”

_X_ I am totally serious about this application and secretly hoping someone from Goldman reads it and gives me money in any amount. Really. Please. Really.

I acknowledge that if I receive a grant from Goldman Sachs, I relinquish my right to complain about executive compensation.**

**Not that anyone was listening.


Darcie Dennigan is the author of Corinna A-Maying the Apocalypse. She lives in Providence. Carl Dimitri is a landscape painter living in Belize. More from this author →