Friday, November 25, 2011

The Clerk - a poem for Black Friday

                                             The Clerk

                                           Crouching on cardboard ledgers
                                             I watch as my inky numbers
                                             Hurry   crawl    stumble…then
                                             Quick-before-they-fall, stand up
                                             Salute and mumble into this:

                                             The simple YES & NO
                                              RICH & POOR, GREAT SUCCESS or NOT
                                              Today RED and Tomorrow BLACK.

                                              Easy, but is it all? Is there anything
                                              Left to lack, off the record,
                                              Not in a ready realm?

                                              At home, my private answers
                                                      run far from clear.
                                              Daily, I compute to 
                                                      marginal shades of grey.
                                              At last check, my largest accounts still lay
                                              Un-won, moldering in foreign banks.
                                              Trust seems a sorry venture.
                                              What’s good for me is mutually safe, 
                                                      mutually  mine.
                                              The surest numeral I know is
                                               ME, MYSELF, ONE, ALONE.


                                               AS OF THIS DATE
                                               I WILL NO LONGER
                                               BE RESPONSIBLE
                                               FOR ANY DEBTS
                                               OTHER THAN MY OWN.

                                               Kay Weeks  c. 1970

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