You stand in the long queue of a sentence,
barely noticed and often mistaken
for something you’re not—
like being possessive
even though you don’t own a thing.
There’s no shame in the title
of smallest verb. It’s just
that you’re never where the action is.
While other verbs sky-dive
or star in their own films,
you are as still as a photograph,
the calm on the surface of a lake.
Some say you are too casual
for formal occasions, yet you
always sneak in, disguised
as a scarf on the neck of pronouns
or smuggled under the wings of adverbs.
You might look like half a word,
a single letter who punctuates
above its weight. But the truth is
you laze around all day
while the full-bodied verbs
carry the burden of meaning.
To sweep the floor or wash dishes
is beneath you. Instead,
you curl up on a couch
looking out the windows
and all you can do is say:
it’s raining …
Well, yes, of course it is.