FOR BETTER OR WORSTED
Dimensions matter not;
density, mass, color?
Construction of wood, bone,
Inconsequential; your sole purpose is smooth utility,
dependent upon ratios: needle to yarn, gauge and knitter’s skill.
Mated in kinetic choreography,
serve the pattern.
Loop to loop,
yarn over, increase, decrease.
In your lifespan shuttle millions of stitches,
Alpha to Omega, cast on to bind off.
Enmeshed in the dance of fingers and yarn,
you liberate textile strands from their paper girdles.
The pattern evolves from spiraled cocoons,
suspends from you,
Yarn and pattern retain their names:
angora, mohair. Saxon plait, entrelac.
Waves of accolades but not for you
who alternates between action and limbo-sheathed inertia until
the first chip or scratch renders you a liability.
Together discarded, replaced, maybe recycled.
No loyalty or legacy; rarely are you handed down.
The final slight?
Not even can the best of knitters
recall the litany of items
that you helped to make.
– Jan Tucker Mulligan