The Poet Community

Opportunity Cost | A Poem by Sheikha A.

I sit at my craft handed down
to me by my grandfather, a school
that none of the books could’ve taught
me; like these hands, my father would say
don’t belong with a pen, but chisel and nail.

My craft makes no demands
on the common man, shakes no nests,
topples no kingdoms, upturns no thrones
of my mind that has left me bereft of the now
to visit the books, at the school, I never held
between my calloused but endowed fingers.

I wonder upon the nails I bend and convert,
if a page of history would have etched mine
into the same wooden planks I ready for sale…

Have I been gifted — into oblivion –?
I know of contentment like no other
simpleton, my trade finds me my day’s bread,
no different from the daily bird; my craft
stays untarnished, day after day,
by books I never visited.

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