Old Dogs

SMOKE TEST


off and on
I spent
over a decade
doing electronics
work

not because
I had
any great love
for the endeavor
but mainly as a result
of having a predisposed aptitude
for the required
math and science
pointing a young man
who otherwise
had little talent
or ambition
in any field
toward one that
could possibly provide
some monetary security
and small amount
of relative
status

for those
considering
similar choices
please take into account
that there is nothing sleek
elegant
nor esthetic
about electricity
in any form

it is
a fat
stupid
and lazy animal
with spiteful tendencies
and should probably be
avoided at all costs
for it takes
special joy
in striking down those
who consider that have
possibly mastered
its erratic nature

treat it
with caution
and a certain contempt
or it may just
reach out
and kill

electronic devices
while appearing fairly chic
with their fancy lights
digital readouts
and esoteric controls
are by association
in league
with the beast

they have
their own
vindictive
and moody personalities
seemingly derived
from the collective
negative characteristics
of the people
who touch them

they are pieces
of technological terror
waiting for some human
whom they can
ridicule
and abuse

I think of
Ben Franklin
Thomas Edison
Nikola Tesla
William Shockley
and those of their ilk
with questionable regard
for the "enlightenment"
they have inspired

possibly
their remains
should be unceremoniously
unearthed
and thrown
into a common pit
along with the technology
they helped to inspire
covered
with a thick
layer of excrement
before being buried
and perpetually sealed
in a concrete tomb
like some
Chernobyl
disaster

it has been
well over a year
since
I have switched on
a high tech oscilloscope
and contemptuously probed
an electronic quagmire
looking for a clue
of malfunction

I can hardly
believe
that I ever
spent my days
in such a sordid
fashion

even now
out of work
I could never consider
going back to freely
prostitute myself
in such a career
of alchemistic
futility

I have
jumped ship
as they say
embracing the literary
in hope
of some distant
and satisfying
salvation

more than likely
I'll only end up
with horribly familiar
and caustic conclusions
leaving me to believe
that the only option
is to turn
the damn thing on
stand back

WAY back

mutter
a silent prayer
to myself
and hope
for the clear air
of success