I wonder how many words
I have erased in my life,
how many phrases 
I have tweaked,
how many ideas
I have thrown away.

Check the erasers on my pencils,
shaved to nonexistent stumps,
or the backspace key on my computer,
worn from overuse,
or the ink in my pens,
dried out from scratching through 
ideas that seemed so good at the time.

I bet that I could write 
endless stories and poems
with the words that I’ve erased,
the words that I’ve let slip away
to wherever the forgotten ideas go.

I wonder
if I looked back through them,
would I wish 
that I had told the story differently?