This is how it went

Trees frame the window:


scholar trees, though tourists dragging cameras up the hill

see only a mock gothic quadrangle emerging from grass;


sturdy trees, tenacious,  papyrus unfolding insect life

and bark-edged loyalty to the reader and worker bees


inside. Fumes of vapid economic rationalism

block the colony, foraging among pages ceases.


Trees hold me in their radix. I bypass desks, computers

paper, filing cabinets; pick up my bag, and leave


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There is an unevenness around my feet

a flattened scrub ahead and counting,

thirteen working days. I break the landscape

into segments of ground well covered

through a working life, abandoning

the mounds of steppes traversed,

to people the days with trees. Willow

shelters me in my office- cove,

Moreton Bays confront indifference

and I, in headphone bliss, am leaping

across the shortening plain.


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The Beehive

There’s a hint of a beehive

in the air

all that scurrying about

as people throng outdoors

like insects uncertain of their hives.


I’m walking away from weasel

words, bureau-speak

joining the office nomads

taking the road to nowhere


Honey, hang up your briefcase

and throw off your shoes

time to buzz off


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Words a Poet Would not Use

I refer to

words a poet would not use

regretfully confirming

our operational needs.

We’ve unpacked your position

with HR’s permission

and appreciate your contributions

over so many years

however moving forward

(I’m sure you’ll understand

you’re an old hand)


we’re offering you

a voluntary redundancy

which will position you well

to further your options.

After twelve weeks from today

there’ll be nothing more to say


Yours sincerely.

Words a manager would not use

“good night, and good luck.”



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