The DIY Poem

single sock


I’ve just come back from Daiso.

I ignored the photo frames, the bow ties, the dog biscuits,

I went straight to the cheap DIY poems,

because even the price of words has gone up these days.


I wanted to try making a poem by myself, you know, the Ikea experience,

instead of getting a professional poet to come and install words for me.


You would think that even a $1.99 poem should come with an instruction manual,

a cheat-sheet for suggested end rhymes, some quick-start ideas or even a sample poem.




For $1.99 all you get is a blank piece of paper, a pencil and 4 small cards.

I turn them over, and one says

Theme: Identity

another says

Tone: Happy

one more says

Poetic Device: Personification

and the last one is a picture of a sock.

I look in the packet for something else… a quote maybe, or an auto-complete button…


So I start thinking why socks don’t often come in black and white,

why bright colors on socks generally make your day walk by better.

I remember how socks keep your feet warm, unflustered and blister-free

I remember never to pair white sport socks with black pants.


Perhaps, I could use my poetic device to give the sock feelings of heroism

when it fulfills its stoic duty in spite of toenails threatening to punch holes in it,

how it gets bullied in the washing machine by more elegant work socks,

or smiles in quiet triumph when it gets picked to go out on weekends.


But look, it’s just one sock, and not two.

Are single socks more fashionable these days?

Maybe this sock likes to go DIY,

but a single sock getting a foot job might send it to a sticky end.


Or maybe someone else has another DIY poem kit with my matching sock,

and is writing a poem about how their single sock will find my single sock

and pair up, because… (cue killer last line)

they’re not single, they’re just waiting.

Author: Marc

Creative educator. Sometime photographer. Fiddler of words.

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