They seemed ubiquitous and twee.
Each office used one, with a half-dead pen,
To mark off who was in and when.
The markers were so clumsy, thick, and rough,
No elegance in writing - not enough -
Too easily erased, nothing secure,
No information safe, no data sure.
I kept my notes and lists on scraps, in files.
I used new systems frequently, new styles,
New methods of to-do lists, daily jots,
Which piled up in calendars and pots.
From pocket calendars to wall,
At last, I came to iCal in the fall.
In general, it seemed to solve the case,
But all of those to-do lists grew apace.
Three months left undone - or four - or five -
A system insufficient for my life.
I migrated to scraps, one for each day,
And gradually found order in this way.
Yet scraps are piled, heaped and lost,
Go easily astray, or idly tossed.
To solve this conundrum, I vowed to buy
A magnet board, disorder to defie.
I stopped by Staples - only just last week -
Down the aisles, passed coffee and fake teak,
Passed clipboards, staplers, tissues, pencils, clips,
And paused in front of tackboards, hands on hips.
Bulletin boards and whiteboards, pens and pins,
In wide arrays of styles, piled in bins.
I had to ask - where were the magnet boards?
To which the helpful salesgirl pointed towards.
A limited selection, only two!
A small one and a large one, no more viewed.
I took the small and silvered one, and paid,
And then around it extra magnets laid.
Yet - extra-feature - it came with a pen
To double as a whiteboard, if and when
I chose to use it so; and so I did -
For, to my surprise, when I took off its lid...
It was fine-tipped! A whiteboard pen! So fine!
I could write so smoothly, slender line.
I always thought those markers were so rough,
So thick, without the necessary stuff
To give me cause to use them, to employ
A whiteboard for evolving lists, a toy
With which to organize to-do lists, notes,
Alerts, reminders, thoughts, or news or votes.
And so this morning, when I first got up,
Before I checked my email or I supped,
I checked my silver whiteboard, pen in hand,
And reading through my lists, I understand
How wonderful this system is for me -
Perhaps ubiquitous, but worth the fee
To take a fine-tipped pen and wipe away
Tasks complete, with lists replete relabeled for today.