🛠️  Hacking with Hamlet  👑

On being the only thing not blooming

Rainy weeks are here at MIT, which means another summer has passed me by. I have not produced an ounce of work in months; I’ve spent my days watching my colleagues publish and present and succeed. Twitter is crawling with its gloating announcements — papers, talks, press, awards, jobs — and even the incoming students have something brilliant to share.

Ram's Head, White Hollyhock-Hills by Georgia O'Keeffe

As for me? I made my bed today. I washed a dish, I made a wish. It’s almost fall now, but I’m thinking about a poem called “Screw Spring” by William Hoffmann.

Screw Spring
by William Hoffmann

Screw spring.
I’m the only thing not blooming.
The arrowhead plant, so carelessly potted,
is growing.
Even the jonquils,
brought for one dinner,
are not quite dead.
Under the bed
the dust is as thick as wool on spring sheep,
which are undoubtedly
grazing where
grass is growing
at an enviable rate.

Screw spring.
My boyfriend’s taken to getting up early.
He goes out
to see plants
pushing their way
out of the ground,
and flowering,
and sits by some chartreuse tree
in the sun, breathing air
as sweet as berry wine,
watching girls pass.
Their faces are rested
from sleeping alone all winter.

Screw spring.
I wish it were winter,
when the world’s
this one room.
These walls, this bed