Incremental Poetry ~ 85 Lines

Sharkbait Broo[m]-ha-ha

Silently watching my new acquisition, I
thrill at the sight of the work it is doing while
fin’lly I sit at the table to write a new
poem. It’s been quite a while since I’ve done it—in
fact, it’s been more than a year! So as you can im-
agine, it’s nice to be writing again. Now this
vacuum was given to me by my eldest, who
also just yesterday came here to help me get
started in using it. First on the list was to
choose a good place as a station for docking the
robot. My son kindly offered to help me de-
clutter my house—a kind gesture, I’m sure, but I
equally kindly declined, for I knew all the
things he would make disappear, and I’m still young and
able to do it myself. So, no sir, I’ll de-
cide what will stay, what will go. And I know I’d be
wise if I put things in place before sending my
servant AI off to map out the house. But no
matter, because I can map it again in the
future. For now, let it clean what it may. And what-
ever it vacuums will be an improvement on
what came before. Several minutes have passed—half an
hour, in fact—and my Sharkbait has gone to his
dock to recharge. When the power is back to full
strength, he’ll resume what he started. But meanwhile, this
poem will keep trudging on till I think I have
labored upon it enough. By the way, did you
notice the name I’ve bestowed on my new acqui-
sition? It needed no thought. I just blurted it
out when my son said to give it a name. Now, the
“Bru-ha-ha” part doesn’t fit in the app, so his
name is officially Sharkbait. A suitable
name, don’t you think, for a Shark that’s as small as a
dinner plate. Yes, it befits the AI to a
T, and I think even you will agree on this.

Sharkbait continues to rest, and now, having had
lunch, I return to my quest to create a new
poem. I thought I would write just a few simple
lines, just enough to break fast and to get in the
groove once again. But it seems that with this one I’ll
go on forever. Or not. But just maybe I’ll
carry it on until Line 85, giving
this one a place with the others that grow by one
line at a time. After all, it has also been
quite a long while since I’ve written for that series.
Frankly, dear reader, I only continue the
series because I’m too stubborn to stop what I’ve
started until it is finished, no matter how
long it may take me to do it. And so I press
on with one post at a time ’til the project is
done. And forbid I may die without writing the
final long entry, which happens to end upon
Line 105. When my consciousness streams, as it’s
doing right now, I could fill many reams (and in-
deed I have done so through years of my writing both
poem and prose. And I’ll have to admit that my
work has not always been deep or profound. Yet at
times I look back to reread what I’ve writ, and I
wonder, “Was that truly written by me?” I know
this one is silly, but some of the other ones
bear a reflection that mirrors the depth of my
soul, and I’m humbled to think that at some given
moment perhaps I was able to write something
worthy of reading again and again by my
fellow compadres. I know from the comments you
leave that it’s true that a few of my mind’s small but
wordy inventions have met their intentions and
gained your attentions. And maybe, just maybe, they’ve
also reflected your heart-felt emotions. For
all of the times I have happened to write something
true that connects on a level which plummets the
surface of vanity’s light insignificance,
God gets the credit, for He is my Maker and
gave me what talent I have, so I use it for
Him and His glory. Now back to the story of
Sharkbait, my broom—ha! ha! Maybe the use of a
maid such as this will prevent all the hair from our
dog from descending on everything. Tired have I
been of removing his strands from my clothing, the
furniture, even the oven door. Yes, sir, I
even find hair in the oven door! How? Please don’t
ask. I can’t figure it out, but it’s there all the
same. And now wouldn’t you know, but my neighbor has
recently purchased a Shark for his wife. I must
go, for he asked me to figure it out for her.

Copyright © 2021 Abigail Gronway – All Rights Reserved

Welcome to my series, Incremental Poetry, where each week the featured poem will be one line longer than the one I share the week before. I have no idea how long I’ll keep this up, so we’ll just have to wait and see. Thank you for stopping by.

Alcmanic Verse
a type of line, rather than a form
12 syllables per line
Meter: dactylic tetrameter (Suu / Suu / Suu / Suu)
[S = stressed syllable, u = unstressed syllable]

It may stand alone or be combined to form a poem of any length. While this particular example appears to have spawned from a manic state, mania has nothing to do with the name. Alcmanic Verse was named for the ancient Greek poet Alcman and was commonly used in early Greek verse.

About the poem: This poem is almost entirely true. My son bought me a Shark for an early Christmas present, and he came over yesterday to set it up for me. Yes, the name is an allusion to Finding Nemo. Today I let it map out the house, and I wrote this poem while it made its first clean sweep throughout the house. I’m curious to see how full the 60-day compartment will be when it finishes collecting dog hair kindly donated by our 13-year-old German Shepherd. (I have to empty my canister vac every time I use it, and I use it at least once a week.) While our Shark was charging, and while I was still writing this poem, one of our neighbors came over for help. It so happens that he also just bought his wife an AI vacuum. Hers is actually a Roomba, but in my poem it’s a Shark like mine. It was fortuitous, because I had no idea how to bring the poem to a satisfactory conclusion. Stopping to go help our neighbor gave me just the out I needed.

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