Poem of the Week 14

Firing the Fireman

The fireman was fired today.
The barber’s now on severance pay.
Crestfallen are the lumberjacks
Since their employment got the axe.
The cobbler got the boot; what’s more,
The carpenter was shown the door.
And I’ve just learned, with some alarm,
Of lay-offs at the poultry farm.

The sailor got the old heave-ho;
The trapeze artist was let go.
The burlap weaver won’t be back
Now that he too has got the sack.
Redundant is the copyist.
The beauty pageant queen? Dismissed.
Designers of her lingerie
Were given their pink slips today.

Discharged, the local electrician
Currently seeks a new position.
The notary was disinclined
To take a pay cut, so resigned.
The cannery is closing and
The workers there have all been canned.
And given this, I’m not surprised
The dietician’s been downsized.

In English there is no vocation
Sans a term for termination,
So when the recession looms
The only worker, one assumes,
The threat of job loss won’t deter:
The humble lexicographer!

—Tristan Miler