Friday, October 21, 2016


There are interesting people
Down at Centrelink.
Some are just out of the clink.
Others, like me, are beginning to sink
Into some sort of financial oblivion
With little or nought to be living on,
Short of a dollar even for a drink,
Glad of a handout,
Hoping not to stand out.
But staff interview you
At an open desk
Or across a counter
And bystanders join the fray.
They hurt with the things they say.
How is it that even a poor fool
Has it in him to be, simply, cruel?
Apply for twenty jobs a month,
The employment agencies bay,
Because that's the rule by which we play.
Sadly, it's rejection after rejection for you,
But it makes politicians feel good.
Who cares if each knock-back hurts
So much it makes you
A little madder each day
And leaves you certain
You are surely unemployable.
It is also quite enjoyable
For senior bureaucrats,
Backed by slack administration,
To see their "clients" crushed
By obligations and frustrations
Instead of being flushed
With success and good vibrations.
The decline is much more entertaining
If you're old and beyond retaining
For the most basic task.
All of which leads me to ask:
Now that I'm 64,
Will you still need me?
Will you still feed me?
Grudgingly, if at all, it seems.
There is no such thing now as hope,
Even in my sweetest dreams.

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