Henrietta the Hoarder

Henrietta, the Hoarder, couldn’t throw things away.
“Oh, I can’t,” she would mutter, “I just can’t,” she would say.
Her house overflowed in complete disarray,
But she’d only reply “I might need that someday!”

Henrietta, the Hoarder, always had an excuse:
“It’s important to keep all the things you might use.”
“For example…” she’d say and then she’d produce
Several cartons of expired cranberry juice.

“I’m using that shoelace!” she’d say in a huff,
Even though it was hidden under piles of stuff.
Just pushing one’s way through her room was so tough,
That her friends wouldn’t see her, they’d all had enough.

Then one Sunday night Henrietta took stock
As she sat between handbags, nine gnomes, and a sock.
She could no longer find her favorite pet rock,
So she squeezed out the house and went for a walk.

The streets were all empty with lights all aglow,
And a warm summer breeze had started to blow.
The tall trees, the wide planes – a perfect tableau –
That called to her: “Be sure to leave room to grow!”

Henrietta turned ‘round and picked up her pace.
A novel resolve now lit up her face.
In order to make room for more sacred space,
She knew she would have to clean up her place.

It was daunting at first to sift through the mess-
Toy after toy and dress after dress
All of this sorting filled her with stress,
But she persevered nevertheless.

She donated clothes that she’d never worn
And tossed away things that were broken or torn.
She gifted a food shelter cases of corn
And sold her neglected high school French horn.

Slowly but surely, the clutter all cleared;
Cleaning up wasn’t as hard as she’d feared.
All of the filth had now disappeared
And she was ecstatic! She jumped up and cheered!

“From this day forward,” Henrietta swore,
“I’ll keep my house clean and do all my chores,”
And just at that moment peace was restored
As she found her pet rock in her top dresser drawer.


  • November 6, 2012 at 3:51 am // Reply

    I have a sister much like Henrietta. A sweet and lovely monster with space for self-reflection. This gets forwarded to my sister at once.

    Beautiful work, guys.

    Miss you much, Carolyn.

  • November 7, 2012 at 3:28 am // Reply

    my favorite so far! beautiful!

    • November 14, 2012 at 7:54 pm // Reply

      I agree! Love it.

  • November 9, 2012 at 7:18 am // Reply

    Bravo, j’ai adoré ce poème; il ne reste qu’à le pratiquer.

  • November 16, 2012 at 3:47 am // Reply

    I know this appeared in the Monster Weekly, but what I read couldn’t have come from a Monster. A darling story, thanks for sharing.

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