The Poet’s Embezzlement

Every poet cheats his boss.

–Russian proverb.


Into the middle distance
I fix my blankest stare.
I nod my head
at what is said.
My brain is God knows where.


“Our revenue’s declining”-
so says our CFO.
I hear the words–
it’s too absurd–
I care not ’bout his dough.

With every idle moment,
My fancy ventures free
spelunking mines
within my mind,
committing vagrancy.

My body sits upon its chair
To earn its daily bread.
I’ve picked the lock
while on the clock–
the ghost within has fled.

Too bad we’re not in textiles–
at gathering wool I’m good!
Perhaps like Melville’s Bartleby
I’m just misunderstood.

The folks down in accounting
can’t figure out what’s wrong.
Lyric’s gain is mammon’s loss
’cause every poet cheats his boss.


Previously published in The Poetry Ark




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