Work Shit Song

Text by Michael Reid

Illustrations by Tom Moore

This isn’t a work song, this is a work shit song. I am a suit in the toils of luxury. This is a gurnathon. A sigh pulped by contractions – bliss! A sign worrying my lips...

What are these palpitations when my arms hang loose? Meshes pushing out my skull, head falls, stubble scratching at my collarbone. Sick with gratitude for this five minutes of leave. This is a ceremony – I’d like to thank everybody who put me here, languishing in relief, ungrateful relief, unwelcome relief. I thought there was a word I’d swallowed. It bores me to shit for it. What use here is memory? This is somatic synergy, this is a permit. I sit up with poise, I’m performing, twisting my grins, inanity. A word worrying, I’ve forgotten what it is. Splayed legs trembling with the signals still buzzing in me, yes, I vibrated with every phone ring, every mouse click gathered elation. A new word or an old one? Too many pennies flowing through me, I dream of new impotencies. Fluoxetine won’t cut it, caffeine only tenses it, I mean total extroversion, I can hear the company calling me. I’m ready for the next stage and it’s ready for the next stage. Yes, I’m becoming this coming company. What an addition to company! When it sings, I sing. When I sing, it sings. No more guilt dragging my latencies, no more barbs snagging my reveries. This is a work shit stream, this is gurnocracy. This is a neck tendon saluting, this is a fiery heaven implored, this is a wrinkling shirt, this is the brilliant white of the cubicle door. This is feathering effluvia, the last evanescent gasp, wonder, blood spurt and distension, new growths and departments. Haemorrhoidal extensions, ulcerous connections, postures hammered into place, ache beyond all ache. The future will not relent and the future is possessing me. When my body is its body even waste won’t go unredeemed. I lick the shit and blood off my fingers, I speak in tongues lapping enfolding double-speak, my eyelids patterning circuitry. I am a chorus singing. I am a chorus singing. And we will never be bored again...

I wipe clean. I’m recomposing. This is the sign on the door: “Have you washed your hands?” I wash my hands.

  • Work Shit Song