One Stanza Poem O188

Just wanna say –
I haven’t –
Spent –
A cent –
Except for rent –
This month of May –
Until today –
The 13th day –
Hip! Hip! Hooray!




Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion.



Notes to this poem…

It’s been a while since I’ve written something along the lines of what I call “one stanza poems” by my definition below. This one is more than 9 lines long but given the very short nature of the lines, I’ll count it as one.

I’ve been taking some Science of Happiness style courses online, namely a course from Yale on Coursera and one on edX from UC Berkeley. They have been very enlightening, though for me, sometimes it has been so only to understand why some things I have done instinctively have been so effective for me. You can see some of my posts about the former course here. I’m only about 1/3 of the way through the latter that is much more in-depth, but might be too much for those who just might want to know the goods and some basic theory.

I’m generally a pretty happy person so to test my resiliency to some things that would make me, and others, less happy, I’ve been doing some self-deprivation of things like eating out in March (and a bunch of social life with it since it’d have been awkward to join friends for dinner out and not eat or drink anything paid). This month, I’m taking on, both, eating out and material “wants”, seeing as I had a decent stash of food left from April to use up. I spent $84 on all food and drink in March, with some stuff left over from February in the fridge and cupboards, and I might be able to go lower this month pending how the rest of it goes.

The material “wants” is the tough part due to impulse buying restraint, even if just the dollar or two kind. Passing up on big sale items I know I’ll eventually get around to using is also hard, but I’ll persist till the next sale even if I need it before then. I’m specifically looking at some running shoes at $40.

And what do I get out of all this? Some gratitude for what life is like for some, to a small extent. I’m not exactly living in poverty, though not anything glamorous, either. Some self-knowledge for what I can put up with, which one won’t truly know until one tries.

And a bragging one stanza poem. 🙂

I spent $12.67 on groceries. Still under $1 per day. 🙂

The O-series of poems are one stanza poems composed before I got onto writing haiku and tanka, and short poetry while in action or traveling by select means like plane or ferry. These poems are 3-9 lines long with at least one rhyming couplet, and not of the short forms just mentioned. For the sake of elegance, I just called the collection One.


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