I had cause to quote this poem today. Dan Albergotti turned me on to it last weekend. It is the first poem in Jack Gilbert’s first book.
In Dispraise Of Poetry
When the King of Siam disliked a courtier,
he gave him a beautiful white elephant.
The miracle beast deserved such ritual
that to care for him properly meant ruin.
Yet to care for him improperly was worse.
It appears the gift could not be refused.