Friday Poem: Declared Goods


We never count how many “goods” we utter each day.
Good morning. Good weather. Goodnight, sweetheart.
The Lord looked upon his creation and saw it was good.
“Good” says the movie villain after hearing
how the journalist’s brakes failed on a rainy night.
The wholesomeness of the bearded West Country gentleman
announcing, “Good gear!” outside Camden Town station.
If “Love” is just a word then “Good” is not even that —
a grunt our ancestors made before skinning their quarry,
the nuanced food criticism of a six-year-old child.
“Good” was her last word after her soul shrank
to the the size of a starling and she was right.
“Good” is good. Because it means nothing.
That’s why we fight wars over what it might be.
For me, these days, it has become a tuning fork
that I try to ping in whatever quiet moments I receive,
a humming without purpose or reason, not even its own.