Paul Archer - photo Paul Archer - poet, translator



Flatpack Poem

If this poem came from IKEA
it would be a flatpack poem
you'd have to assemble
from its various parts
connecting the metre and rhyme
aligning the alliteration
and offering up heartfelt emotion
and deep thought,
bolting them together
with an Allen key that isn't
yet lost, but will be.
You'd look at the diagrams
but won't figure them out
and you'll see how it goes
by yourself and that's
what we call free verse.
If this poem came from IKEA
it would have an obscure
and even unpronounceable title
like "Norråker" or "Lövbacken"
or "Svartåsen" perhaps,
and we'd all have a poem
somewhere around the house
that was exactly the same
as everybody else's,
but pretend we hadn't.

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