NaPoWriMo 09 – day 29


An Unusual Affection for Paperclips

I am growing older, stiffer in knees and hips.
How could I not admire the flexibility of paperclips?


Pleasure comes from simple things. Behold
a child with a box of coloured paperclips! 


Chaos is the final order, and settles among my things.
I hold it at bay with bookmarks, lists and paperclips. 


Ours is a marriage of equals, not co-dependents. We hold
together not like staples, but like paperclips.


A daisy-chain from an office-world. A necklace
for my sweetheart, of linked paperclips. 


A bill becomes a billet-doux
when sent with twelve red paperclips.


A spare key, a scraping tool,
a hole punch, a twist-tie – a paperclip.


I won my freedom from my father
in a game of poker with paperclips.


When all else is lost, this much I know:
search under the cushions, and you will find a paperclip.




Ok, not exactly high-literature. But fun. And a nod towards Wednesday being list-poem day at Read Write Poem. (As it happens, the prompt for today was I Can’t … So this would fall under the heading of not on prompt, except very very very sort-of: “I can’t make this poem link to the prompt”?)

I began it thinking I’d try to be vaguely ghazal-like, but it soon turned into a much sillier, much loopier, more Wallace Stevens affair.
And I’m reading tonight at the CPC, so I’m not exactly in the writing zone …(grovel, whine, whinge, grovel)

Actually paperclips do slightly fascinate me – something I proved inadvertently today. I was getting some stationery, and was actually about to put my purchases down on the counter when I realised that I was still holding a large (800+) box of multicoloured paperclips. And then thought “oh yeah, I’ll get them too”, before I woke up to myself and dropped them behind a display of half-priced diaries. I put my moment of madness down to the fact that each colour had its own little compartment in a sturdy plastic case. (And yes, I do know how sad that is.)

And I’m not alone:

3 Replies to “NaPoWriMo 09 – day 29”

  1. I like your paperclip poem. The paperclip is so humble and common. I also like the Wikipedia article you link on the guy with the red paperclip trading to a house.
    Good write!

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