When asked to write a story in ten days
The only way that I know to succeed
Is stealing bits of time from work and play,
And then converting them to what I need.
But by the time the story is submitted,
The spring of inspiration has run dry;
To prime the pump is not merely permitted,
It’s neeedful to maintain the mind’s supply.
And so my eyes devoured every word
That it was in my power to provide,
And yet the brain commands me, undeterred,
To read until it may be satisfied.
I’m grateful to receive a mental boost
Each time I read a paragraph of Proust.