Posted in Lies


Everybody was very young
careers and address yet to be urgent
status for a boy : notches on the bedpost
for girls
the resistance to becoming one.

He was a kind of godfather to us
considerably older
but not old
a person who suspended judgement
or disguised it well.
Gentle and appealingly bedraggled
he seemed mystified at the worldliness of the world.
A sweet daughter and mad hatter wife
completed a triangle of eccentricity.

We were delighted when he entered business
it was for the customers he said
money wasn’t important. We willed success.
A member of our self appointed importance
became his first employee.
We were envious of the favour that fell
workload was higher than imagined.
Still, the cause was good – God’s work.

Later, some muted disquiet between the two
the owner worried out loud
his former employee had navigated turbulent waters
young people do…. vegetables to the desert of youth
just a sweet kid – needing some time out.

As is frequent in the yacht race of life
participants clustered at the start
scatter on the ocean of opportunity.
Back in port many years later
stories abounded of shipwrecked employees.



Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.

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