It’s such a waste, she says, every time she sees me
tear another sheet of paper
into fragments of word-processed confetti,
or hears the shredder reducing it
to vermicelli worms,
I could’ve  used all that for shopping lists.

She means the white reverse of every sheet,
the undated side with only shadow
poems showing faintly through.
How many hundreds more of them,
neat lines of words on one side, nothing on the other,
have I carefully squirreled away?

And here I am, at sixty-two, still covering paper every day,
drafting, revising, keeping busy recycling thought.

Ken Head

If you have any comments on this poem, Ken Head would be pleased to hear them.

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