people still spoke his name,
always in the softest possible way
handled the sentence in which it appeared
as if mohair, or silk.
He was gone before I started.
Gone from the workplace,
one day as afternoon turned to evening
coming back from extension classes
for his diploma
motorbike + truck + inattention = death.
I was the inheritor –
after the inheritor.
His name was still on the staff board
my predecessor’s removed before I commenced –
mine, sometime between Monday and Friday, of my last week
but Gerald’s remained.