How to Scrabble

Maureen Sherbondy

At the beginning of the game
players discover numerous options
to spread letters into words
on the open field of the board.

Points accumulate with each word
placed on the desirable property
addresses of the upper crest of society:
the double and triple point spots selected
carefully like ocean-front property.

But near the end, wooden
holders display a mishmash
of misfit tiles: x, j, z, and q
(useless without the u, my quiet queen,
my quaint kumquat).

Eyes dart around in search
of found pie-slice openings, like finding
a parking spot in the crowded city
during rush hour.

No land exists to send taxes
no acreage to set down zoo,
so you’re stuck lifting
tile after tile of short articles,
one a, one e at a time.