Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited
She spends days staring at spreadsheets, enters invoices like a robot
Log on and off as empty as a bucket
Spends nights dancing to a different clock: to ten minute lap dance intervals,
and could bounce a song as much fun as a hard on.
Tony resembles a monkey in a cage biting an apple,
“How was your weekend?”
Didn’t do much, read a book, some ironing …
She excites for secrets hid the corporate wear
Blocks her path with his arms, “Liar”
His hand, her knee, falls the primate down.
Grow thin the days, turns eyes to dust as if she’s aged fifty years plus.
Each morning too much, until Jeremy employs a cheeky smile, an English accent, flirty
emails, dirty pictures. Kisses down her throat sweet as honey.
Such the fun forbidden romance, drunk on love a serpent visits the dark.
Erect a maypole, the Highland fling, each fantasy or dream
Moon through windows call a number on the clock
Fluorescent glow through dark, buzz a bird, but warnings don’t get heard because she hasn’t
feasted in years, and fruit so juicy to linger here.
“Izzy we have to let you go”. She is that magpie flown into a pane
“You know why, but officially it’s your lack of ambition. And Tony, well, you brought it on
yourself. What did you expect?”
He’s as cold as the machines they sell, but reality hits hot like a snakebite.
A naughty student gets expelled, and Eve from the garden.
If she’s crossed a line hasn’t he?
Jeremy is Judas pocketing the silver, and she still can’t see the colour of his eyes for the glow
in the dark.
Or is there another line? Unclear the reason sins bear hold.
Might a shadow life, an insult greater still
Weeps openly at her desk for the rest of that afternoon. As if she is a martyr, she stays until
the end, makes them churn as butter until they virtually turf her out by the chin.
To be fired, is exactly that, an ashen black blemish on her resume, like wearing a scarlet letter
burned into her skin and worn forever.
The girls call discrimination! “You should fight for our rights”
Still reel the snap of a trap to walk into like a blind beggar
He said, “We don’t want your element here”
Another slur, a smear, resembles racial segregation and we are a breed they especially need to
keep within certain boundaries, corralled as sheep.
Within weeks Michael and Jeremy enter the club, with veneers so disgustingly smug.
A double standard sits as a pill gone rancid half way down her gullet.
This is her workplace, get out!
Days and nights flip like pages in a book when she came to understand
They visit the underworld spend time with girls
Their shadow selves, entertain clients at will.
Need leave it here in the dark, hidden from all that’s white, a wife and kids, the daylight cogs
of palms washed and clocks tock.
A façade of how things work
Their masks must know no cracks no sign of silhouettes
To risk the new car bought, private schools sought, holidays planned and paid.
No, she must go.
She had no business taking naked pictures from their minds to the workplace, turning day
into night, erasing those lines was another type of betrayal, on a much grander scale.
A scapegoat sets the blame so corporate Australia, and family man, can carry on exactly the same.
Choices made for one hard to pin down, a dual citizen whose equity resides on both sides.
But daylight feels like a lie
A sleepwalk game that ends the same every day.
Now she dances without restraint, hair spins in the fly of a pole
No push and pull of moon and sun
The contest over, a balance hangs.
“Family man” is a term used by Lara Travis, a Melbourne songwriter, in a song called “Down on King Street” from the album Pineapples, Greenbacks and Glitter in the Air, 2018 by Fancy Yellow Music.