First Things First

I’m counting to infinity.
I started yesterday at three
And took a break at night to sleep
(But even then I counted sheep
And tallied, too, the several screams
That woke me from my scary dreams).
I’m making progress, I can tell,
Because the time it takes to spell
Each number (yes, I write them out
So I’ll have proof for those who doubt
I really did it) is so long
My fingers cramp, but I’ll be strong.
Determination is the key
To counting to infinity:
Write the number, then add one
And write that, too. It’s kind of fun.
Predictable, but that’s okay.
I’ll mix it up another day
When this task has been marked complete,
Which will be pretty soon. How sweet
It’s going to be when those who scoff
Today admit I’ve pulled it off!
The more so, knowing I resisted
Cutting corners. If I’d listed
Fewer numbers–every ten,
For instance–then the moment when
I’ve finished, though one-tenth as long
From now, would feel ten times as wrong.
No shortcuts. Soon, the infinite
Will crumble. I’ll have conquered it
And proven nothing is too hard
For me! And then I’ll rake the yard.


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