The Joy of Poetry

Sean Gabb

Many years ago, when I was a young man, I was asked by one of the sneering thugs set over me in the office where I worked what was the use of poetry. I thought the answer I gave was no more than good-natured badinage. Sadly everyone else thought otherwise. I didn’t work there much longer.

Young professional, straining
Through bulging haemorrhoid
The solids of your business lunch
Painfully to void;

Discontented, how to get
Back to your car unsure,
Staring at a dirty invite
Scribbled on the door;

Time to ask and time to say,
Now you sit alone,
Whether so many thousand pounds
Are worth so many stone.

One comment


  1. Answering a question about poetry with a poem – logical enough I suppose.

    Although an answer in prose (ordinary language – in an effort to explain that culture is an end in its self, not just a means to an end) might have been better – not for the office manager (someone like that is unlikely to be looking for an honest answer to their question), but for third parties.

    Still – you know that now.

Leave a Reply