The memory is a photo album
Someone spilled bloody Mary on,
But I applied for a job
By slipping my resume into a man’s
Pocket whom I brushed up against
On the material way home from the absolute.
As I understand the position was filled
With foam peanuts, and the elephant was sick
With ennui from too many stress tabs,
So I began immediately to organize them
Into tiny piles by name. I put all the Sara’s
Together and the Larson’s together,
But kept the Mumbly’s from the Archibald’s
Because they fought viciously
Over insignificant things like hair tonic.
My boss, who’s head was always in a cloud,
Was impressed by my cunning,
And began to pat me on the back
Until soup was ready and a cow gave
Birth, and the office had a party tray
Brought in from the exterior.
After hours it was the telephone club,
The kind that attracted the underbelly of the city
Who would deposit quarters to release the tones
Into the air that were otherwise locked
In tiny cells by themselves.
They were free to talk so long as the operator
Was being charmed out of her bunch cut.
We chatted up such a storm the shutters
Shut and we had to tunnel out
Through the grease trap, which the women
Found moderately pleasing despite
Us making them go last,
And there were disembodied officers
Waiting to slap imaginary zip ties
Around our necks, rub us down with salts,
Sign off on everything, and escort us back
Into the office where a mountain of paper
Was waiting for its flagpole to ripen.