avaunt (a wary air)

women who wore
flat-soled shoes

that
was how a female colleague
referred to them

it seemed as though
suddenly
quite suddenly
they were everywhere

in bureaucratic power

all the executive levels
of the public service
were purged

we weren’t used to upheaval
like that
back then

but
all the hubs
from community services
to health

even the railways
and
of course
justice
had their share

hard core networkers
with no room
for soft males
unless they simpered

our particular contingent
was led
by a man

himself suffering
from stunted growth
perhaps akin
to dwarfism
and an attitude
that could not care
less

a wave of confusion
in the guise
of decisiveness

not exactly leadership
but
decision
in a kind of lethal
carnivality

and lunches
and after-works

red lipsticks
and unsmeared make-up
a stylized near-pout
through the clever smoke
of a cigarette
with drinks

liberated times
perhaps
but fear-inducing
and cold

a muddling male
suspected
of unwarranted ambition

would be
looked at

tested
and . . .

discarded

so very often
discarded

avaunt
the old

avaunt
the new

I sometimes wonder
where
they all went

two
I recall
rose high
in parliament

~

today
restrictions are easing

once again
I see women
doing lunch

but these two
are older

beyond the clutches
of executive ambition

one wears a mask
while the other
sips coffee

allowed to sit
street-side
over a cuppa
for the first time
in long weeks

the air
in the township
today
breathes easier

though still
with a slight trace
of wariness

~

4 thoughts on “avaunt (a wary air)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.