that men have

keeping things in

is the problem

amongst many apparently

that men have

be more open she said

tell me about your feelings

so like a good boy I started in

I was having a bit of a er

bit of a lonely moment today

I started to say

and

do you need a drink?

came back at me

as I was saying before

Joan in the office is such a bitch

she sneaks around

like butter would not melt

is this a feelings talk?

I ask

or more a bit of a moan?

that’s the problem

with you men she says

you just don’t understand

emotions

all of life

she did not understand

why I went to the bullfights

tho’ I told her

all of life is there

you see the matador?

he stands there

performing veronicas

with his cape

urging the bull to his will

forcing the animal

to charge when he wants

how he shapes

the beast to do these things

watching for weakness

paying attention to the details

of how the bull behaves

so he can make a clean

complete kill?

that there

is office politics

minus the cape

the paseo & music

but the sword?

you bet

still there

oh what fun we had

mornings were not a fuss

I knew what I had to do

i’d roll out of bed

crack the shower

& be gone

be in first

ready with coffee

the boss’d say:

you need painkillers?

I’d gracefully decline

with a bright grin

no need

had an early night

& this would be after

a 3 am roll into bed

I figured

tell him the same

as he told me

nothing

& that way

he couldn’t dangle it

in front of me

at my appraisal

the others’d

pour in late

bleary eyed & hanging

i’d make ’em coffee

hand out painkillers

offer water

which only made ’em

hate me more

as they’d been out

to the same places

quit at the same time

the boss’d appear again

look around

make noises

about all young people today

& we’d yeah, yeah, yeah

him back to his door

later time they’d go out

for a liquid lunch

hair of the dog

the ‘get thru’ today’ beers

i’d sit in the empty office

slumped way down in the chair

catch some zeds

& be fresh as they got back

all post beer & poor sandwiches

& now they definitely hated me more

they wanted to be

the loafing around kind of people

hanging out

waiting for the boss

the world

to recognise how special

they were

& what killed most

they had no recognition

understanding

the boss did not care

& if one of them

were to be special

he’d make sure they were promoted

out of his department

so as

not to be a threat to him

they had their revenge

of me in their hate

finding my poems

the ever half finished novel

& joyfully misinterpreting

each line

page

oh what fun we had

The office

seemed to me
to be the easiest way
to gather together
a group of people to hate
much of the time was spent
on telling each other
just what it was they were going to do
& how of course
that proposed course of action
made them great people
did I mention the hate?
there were several cliques
the group
the in crowd
& each had some secret signal
that bound them together
politics
shoes
style
education
each reason equally banal
they would huddle together
as if sharing state secrets
or of eternal life
the real purpose being to signal
you were not in this
while the drones
that they looked down upon
those
that actually did the work
despised them into hate
there were always meetings
for them to attend
chip in bright ideas
for others to complete
which they could then lay claim to
&
the hate
was not
unearned