Death is a 9 AM job interview:
We're spruced up like we're dates at a debut --
The most official suit, the favorite dress,
A sober tie, jewelry that says "noblesse" --
And with our frozen perms and slicked-back hair,
We face the awesome desk of Heaven, where,
Life's Maitre D' Himself, sits the Creator,
Sniffing at us as if we stiffed a waiter.
With our curriculum vitae in hand,
God glowers like a farmer tilling land
Whose plow keeps turning over stones at best
(With references supplied upon request);
He shakes His head at all our expertise,
Our goals and our responsibilities,
And says: "That's very nice, but what we need,
So we don't have to bring them up to speed,
"Are people with a good imagination,
Because that's what our business is -- Creation.
And with that end in mind, I have to say,
I see no poems on your résumé --
"I see no books, no stories and no plays;
You wrote no songs, you danced in no ballets;
The only thing you painted was a wall.
I see no art -- or art for art -- at all.
"That's what we're in the market for up here --
Someone who looks at Death as a career.
In Our eyes, making things is paramount.
What did you make? -- and money doesn't count."
And while we shift and swallow our dismay,
Frantic to think of something smart to say,
God, with a look that screams "Feel stupid much?"
Extends a hand and says: "We'll be in touch."
"Yeah; right," we mutter as we head outside
And think of all the ways we could have lied
To pad our résumé -- a class revue,
A symphony, a one-act, some haiku.
And then we think: "Good riddance -- not for me --
That job's a one-way trip to lunacy.
'We make things here?' Creation is a mess --
The lousy pay's not worth the lousy stress.
"God knows I'm better than a job like that!"
We tell ourselves, and like an acrobat
We jump through hoops and juggle every facet
Until we balance-sheet this as an asset,
And file our shame behind a corporate smirk,
And head downstairs, because we need the work.
So what if Heaven thinks we're a disgrace?
They're always hiring at the other place.
copyright 2009 Matthew J Wells