Posted in Passages

Finding Out

I thought her okay –
a step up from her predecessor.
The boss seem to think so too.
In the absence of crime
it’s easy to miss the clues,
on day three or four, of her first week
she picked up an expensive, large, catering grade knife –
the best in the kitchen
and beheaded several stalks of broccoli saying,
“a sharp knife is such a sense of power.”
Idle talk about gardening –
winter shaping of next summer’s roses
responded to with
“ I prune hard, very hard,
I like to do the same in the workplace.”

Part-time, very – 12 hours per week
15 if busy
fitted around the rest of my life,
study, swimming, house chores…
My co-workers grumbled around me
she’s so ….
until one of the cooks
more thoughtful than the others
said, “she’s always waiting …..
waiting to reprimand.”
If you say so
vinegar tits they called her and worse.

One afternoon a voice barks: “ WHERE’S THE CHECKLIST. ”
“ Right here Janine.
Why is it not on the shelf where it’s supposed to be
sorry Janine.”

Two or three weeks later.

“ Where’s the checklist?
I’ll just get Janine,
why is it not at hand.”



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.