A dirty little demon is crawling up my pants leg
determined to gnaw off my genitals with its
sharp little demon teeth but I grab it by its hag
hair and slam its head against the corner of my
desk, then I fling its solid little body across the
room into one of my cubicle walls.

The boss walks in and I slip into zombie mode,
staring at the pulsating gray monitor screen,
pretending to do some thoughtful, diligent work,
contemplating the papers spread convincingly
before me, here in the office of my dreams, but
the boss doesn’t buy it as he stares at me, heatedly.

Lately I’ve been using the upstairs toilet where the
soap is clean and the urinals flush, even though I don’t
deserve clean soap, because I’m sick of the downstairs
toilet and I don’t mind the extra steps and because I’m
an uncooperative person who marks it in the victory column
whenever I’ve managed to annoy my boss.


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Image Creditbark

Douglas Goodwin's books include Hung Like a Hebrew National, Half Memory of a Distant Life, and Slamming it Down. The latter two include a foreword by Charles Bukowski, who championed Goodwin's verse and corresponded with Goodwin over several years. Much of the Goodwin-Bukowski correspondence appears in the feature "Letters to Douglas Goodwin" in the 2015/16 edition of the Charles Bukowski Society Jahrbuch 2015/16, edited by Roni and Sönke Mann, out of Bamberg, Germany. Goodwin also collaborated with poet Steve Richmond on the literary magazine stance in the 1980s.