Hard Worker by Fred Voss



He would come by my machine
whenever I stared off into space
for a minute or two
to tell me that, “The company’s not paying you
to daydream, goddamnit!”,
frowning at me as he poked the stem of his pipe
at my Adam’s apple,
then walking off in a self-righteous huff back to
his machine
where he wasted not a second
going back to work misinterpreting blueprints
and making inept set-ups
breaking cutters
and scrapping parts,
all the time keeping his jaws moving non-stop
as he griped and blamed everything
on engineers and supervisors
and company tooling.

Poem taken from GUTS No. 9 edited by Fred Voss, 1998

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