Pieces of a Soma Cube
Pieces of a Soma Cube

As a high school student, one of my odder obsessions was with a Danish polymath named Piet Hein, particularly with a puzzle he invented called the Soma Cube. But Hein’s talents extended far beyond puzzle invention, and though my interest in the Soma Cube has waned over the years, I often find myself returning to Hein’s other famous talent–his short, aphoristic poems called Grooks.

Here are some of my favourites:


Put up in a place
where it’s easy to see
the cryptic admonishment
When you feel how depressingly
slowly you climb,
it’s well to remember that
Things Take Time.


Problems worthy
of attack
prove their worth
by hitting back.


Whenever you’re called on to make up your mind,
and you’re hampered by not having any,
the best way to solve the dilemma, you’ll find,
is simply by spinning a penny.
No – not so that chance shall decide the affair
while you’re passively standing there moping;
but the moment the penny is up in the air,
you suddenly know what you’re hoping

[I use this technique to make decisions quite often, most consequentially thus far when deciding where to apply to grad school.]

If you liked these, you can find more Grooks by Piet Hein here.

3 thoughts on “Grooks

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s