On A Monday Morning

It was another Monday.
The first workday of the week.
Just like Mondays had been
For the past 20 years.
The alarm clock went off.
Telling him it was that time.
Time to get up.
Time to get a shower.
Time to get dressed.
Time to shave.

He’d done this same thing
Week after week.
Day after day.
For 20 years now.
Working in a job
He used to care about
When it all started.

That was something
He never thought about.
Because he’d learned that thinking
Was something bad.
Something that got in his way.
That if he didn’t think about it
He could stay in his job.
With its steady income.
And be someone
His family could depend on.

And he did have bills to pay.
Bills that the job
Made easier to face.
And his income made his lady
Very happy.
For she could do many of the things
That she wanted to.

So on that Monday,
Like all the other Mondays
For 20 straight years,
He got ready,
And he went to work.

When he parked his car
In the parking lot
At the building where he worked,
The back of his head
Began to ache.
He wondered why that was,
As he pulled his pain pills
From the bottle that he kept
In the dashboard of his car.
And then took two of them.
Because one just wasn’t
Strong enough
To kill the pain
Of the headache that he got
Every day at work.

So, he went to work.
Walked up to his desk.
And then sat down.
To do the job
He’d done
For 20 years.

There were times,
He had to admit,
That he didn’t like the job.
That he didn’t like the politics
Of the place that he worked.
The job was really getting old.
And it hadn’t changed at all
In more than 10 years.

That’s how everyone there,
In that workplace,
Liked things to be.
So that their lives
Were predictable.
And safe.
So they could not get hurt.

He kept a little log book
At his desk.
Where he wrote down things
As he thought of them.
The book was sort of like
A journal.
Where he could write about
Anything at all.
Where he could express

It was in that book
That how he felt
Really did come out.
The way he felt
Completely trapped
In the work he did.
Work he was so very good at
That no one would ever
Let him do anything else

How people never really told him
How good a job he did.
How it had become
And expected,
For him to pull another miracle
Out of thin air,
And magically just make things work.

How all the people that he worked for
Had been in the same positions,
For longer than 10 year.
And how they weren’t going anywhere.
So there was no where
For him to move up to.

His life,
And his career
Had peaked.
He wasn’t growing anymore.
He wasn’t changing anymore.

He tried to never think
About such things.
Because he also knew
That such things lead to
In the end.

So he elected to
Shut up,
And just do his job.

Even though his head hurt
Every day he worked.
Even though his hand shook
Every now and then,
So badly that he couldn’t type,
And couldn’t write,
And couldn’t do his job.
Until the shaking stopped.

And every now and then,
While he sat at his desk,
He could feel his heart,
Pounding in his chest,
And his blood
Racing through his veins.

His family would learn,
After he had died
On a Monday morning.
From a heart attack.
That the job
Had literally
Killed him.

They would learn
How trapped he felt
In the job he held
For more than 20 years.

How much of a dead end
It had turned into
For him.

How he’d come to believe
That the work he did
Was meaningless.

That no matter how hard
He worked,
No matter how many problems
He solved.
No one cared at all
About him any more.

They only cared about
The job.

How he tried so very hard
To convince himself
That nothing was wrong.
That everything was OK.
That every other person
In the workplace
Felt the same way.

They read his log.
The journal that it was.
And they knew
As they read his words
That he’d needed help
To deal with the problems
That he had
For a lot of years.

That it had been years
Since he’d been happy.
And he’d carried on,
With his heart aching,
And his soul in great pain,
Day after day,
Until the day
That his heart declared
It’d had enough
Of living in such pain.

And it had simply stopped.

Now I have to ask you something.
Do you have headaches too?
Do they only happen
On the days you have to work.
Are you happy
With the work you do?
Or are you trapped,
Like he was?

If you eat
Pain pills for breakfast,
On the days you go to work.

Perhaps that’s just your body’s way
Of telling you
That something’s very wrong.

If it is,
The please be warned.
That if you ignore the truth
That your heart speaks to you.

You could end up
Just like him.


Where your heart just stopped.
Because it couldn’t stand to face
The pain of your life
For even one more day.


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