Grok, Grooks, and Groot

A Love Story in Aphoristic Poems

From “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2”

Sarah Scullin once used the phrase “I grok it now” to me over Facebook Messenger. “That’s a hell of a typo,” I thought as I asked her to clarify what the four-letter verb she had meant to type was. Love? Hate? Something totally inappropriate to say to your colleague?

Grok,” for those of you who, like me, were born in the nineties or after, means “understand,” more or less. Sarah tried to help me out but typed “grook” into Wikipedia instead — which, as it turns out, is not nonsense!

Yes! A grook (or gruk) is a Danish aphoristic poem created by Piet Hein, who wrote more than seven thousand of them. On a barely related note, both “grok” and “groot” kind of sound like “Groot,” from Guardians of the Galaxy, the sequel to which you can now see in theaters.

So here are some of our favorite grooks, interspersed with gifs of Groot (but only Baby Groot, because that’s the one I like), and finally, a grook I wrote about grok, grooks, and Groot. Ya grok me?

It may be observed, in a general way, 
that life would be better, distinctly 
If more of the people with nothing to say 
were able to say it succinctly

Knowing what 
thou knowest not 
is in a sense 

Man’s a kind 
of Missing Link, 
fondly thinking 
he can think.

This is my article on comparison in a nutshell:

No cow’s like a horse, 
and no horse like a cow. 
That’s one similarity 

When people always 
try to take 
the very smallest 
piece of cake 
how can it also 
always be 
that that’s the one 
that’s left for me?

Eidolon’s writing advice:

Long-winded writers I abhor, 
and glib, prolific chatters; 
give me the ones who tear and gnaw 
their hair and pens to tatters: 
who find their writing such a chore 
they only write what matters.


Losing one glove is certainly painful, 
but nothing compared to the pain, 
of losing one, throwing away the other, 
and finding the first one again.

Solutions to problems 
are easy to find: 
the problem’s a great 
What’s truly an art 
is to wring from your mind 
a problem to fit a solution.

Everything’s either 
concave or convex,
so whatever you dream
will be something with sex.

And finally, my masterpiece:


In conveying understanding, Sarah wrote “grok” 
I said her typing had run amok 
She said on the Internet I should look 
But then she accidentally Wiki’d “grook” 
Then I erred too, and wrote “Groot” 
The point of this poem? Completely moot.

Words like “grok,” “grook,” and “Groot” make Yung In Chae giggle, so please use them wisely around her.