Ode to Uselessness

Karen Henderson  tsgnyblog.org

Karen Henderson   tsgnyblog.org

What can I say?
Usefulness is over`rated
Our lives are full of useful things
stored in our back rooms
in our garages

Look at that cat
asleep on the easy`chair
Of all creatures the most useless
Never comes when called
except for bonito

Look at that dog
basking in the spot of sun
running races in his dog`dreams
Think he could pull a sled?
or guide the blind?

Still I love him more
than I love the lawn`mower
And that cat I love like my child
who now that he’s an adult
considers me useless

What use has poetry
in this Do`It`Yourself world
a world full of self`help manuals
fast computers 3D printers
desk`top publishers

A poet loves words
in ways beyond usefulness
Weaves them together like silk
into a fabric to grace hearts
thirsting an embrace

“Love is like the ocean
or like a photograph of the ocean
or else it’s like a drawing done from a photograph of the ocean
or else it’s like a written description of the sound of waves . . .” 
~ Anders Nilsen, from Poetry Is Useless


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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6 Responses to Ode to Uselessness

  1. I think she liked it, McGee, I think she liked it . . .


  2. cheryl622014 says:

    My daughter read this over my shoulder and said “Oh yes!” She’s 21


  3. Amy says:

    Thanks for the reminder. That “usefulness” is a human invention (and hence not overly trustworthy as an actual thing). That beauty and words and the life they’re gleaned from are enough… And more than enough.


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