Early February a tall man stands
over the front of his trousers
covering the gate of paternity
a guard against accidental opening.
and addresses the staffroom.
Upright, dark hair parted to the right
the side of correct politics and God.
A good-looking man, but not too so
doubt a vestigial element in his life.
He begins to speak
part recitation – royal secretary announcing a knighthood
concurrence reflexive : agreement pro forma
Unfortunately there has been a decision
my employment will not be renewed.
He wants to make one thing clear
this decision is entirely due to budgetary constraints
not any shortfall of expectation or underperformance.
He would like to wish me well.
A soundbite of obligation
added to the menu of the year’s first staff meeting.
A thin spread of absolution
sandwiched between upcoming events and social club levies.