The Workers

There are men in rooms, sharpened

by white-wet light which cut right through

the inch-thick residue

piled on glass. Windows –

a constant here – magnifying whatever was left

of the outside, the other place. Such men!

Jaundiced, slow

prodding small seeds in row on row

of cat-black soil –

fertilised by those who know

their compounds, their futures, or just

how the shoots can grow and bend toward

a sun that may

or may not thrust itself from dawn to night.

Chariots. A great bird. Ball of gas.

They sit, and gaze

and hour on hour they push and test

the cracking husk. A blade, a new life

races upwards.

Now broken free, it’s quickly splinted

strapped up, gartered, forced to stand.

They gender, sex, they splice and list,

pen tips wet lips

and stems are bound,

crutches employed.

the blossom is sketched, breath is held,

leaves cover shame, and shame is shown

clearly. Slowly. Daily.

It is hot in here

and so very, very quiet.

They say the men are old.

About Benjamin Norris

Published writer of short stories, long stories, poems. Well received art critic and cultural commentator for Berlin magazines. Collaborator with operatic societies. Co-writer of fictional historic psycholinguistic journals. Lecturer of architecture and art history at a Budapest University. View all posts by Benjamin Norris

4 responses to “The Workers

  • Rose Herczeg

    Love your poetry. Found your book “Driftwood” on and read to page 15. I have green eyes :), and I very much like your writing style! Thanks so much for being you!

  • Benjamin Norris

    Thank you very much. ‘Driftwood’ was something written years ago, on the back of a university project. I can’t say it is something I would write nowadays. I only wish I had enough time to write something else of similar length!

    • Rose Herczeg

      I appreciate your quick reply! I did notice your blog and yes, it is a very different style from the book. Our phases of life take us to many exotic places, no? I have explored poetry now and again, it seems like it pursues Me instead of it. 🙂 I wish you much success now and forever!

  • adeeyoyo

    Sounds like they are engrossed in another world…

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