Rubber Bands and Spinoza

Here is a poem from Prof. Hans Ostrom (African American Studies and English).  Notice the allusion to Spinoza.


Rubber Bands

I bought a bag of rubber bands. What a paltry
confession! The purchase paid retail homage (one
dollar) to simple binding and flexibility in this age
of monstrous, rigid packaging. I thought of all those
times we searched a whole abode like jonesing addicts
for just one thing: paper clip, shoe lace, thumb tack,
rubber band. Benedict Spinoza proved to my

satisfaction that anything which is, is an attribute
of the only substance (God), which includes
rubber bands, which in repose are lazy bracelets
and flaccid circles. I admit I bought a bag

of rubber bands because they were so much
themselves for so little money. Like cats,
rubber bands stretch profoundly and then
return to their original composure and serenity.

Hans Ostrom