Pavlov’s Ostrich Monkey
A memory murmurs deep in monkey’s chest.
They dress him in a grey concrete coat.
Now monkey works at his desk
from eight in the morning
until whenever at night,
seven days a week.
Trees, stripped of branches,
disguise themselves as telegraph poles.
Their sharp wires shred monkey’s mind:
instant messages of work unfinished,
Herculean labours stabled on monkey’s desk.
When monkey asks for a lifeboat,
they send him to government surplus.
He fills in forms in quintuplicate.
Monkey’s laptop has all the bells and whistles.
When bells ring, monkey answers his emails;
when whistles sound, he drools.
Empty coffee cups litter the floor.
Monkey calls for the cleaner,
and a magic broom appears.
Monkey doesn’t want to be swept under the carpet
nor abandoned at the roadside with the garbage;
he sticks his head in the waste-paper basket,
raises his rear end high in the air, and hides,
like an ostrich.