Surrounded by academics
Of a variety of stripes,
It's easy to make a mistake
That looks foolish in black and white.
Professors fear looking stupid
Like millionaires fear looking poor,
Like athletes fear appearing slow.
We hedge our bets, score points, count coups.
And what do our strategies win?
What cultural reproduction
Tips the cost-benefit trade off
In favor of publications
Over a quiet contentment,
Much less some extra grandchildren?
We are not in charge of this show.
We live to make what makes us more.