Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Older Mexican production line worker says “Muy frio”
Yeah, it’s cold I say, pulling on my smock, hairnet & face-mask
I’m part of the sanitation crew sweeping, mopping,
        swabbing out toilets
all under the watchful eye of what must be a million
surveillance cameras (“Always keep moving” the Filipino tells me
“they watch with the camera everything”) & the plant is vast
giant machinery roaring nonstop attended to by minions
in face-masks, hairnets, white or blue smocks
sycophants ministering the needs of clanging metal

Yes it’s muy frio outside but in here on catwalks above the
the heat crushes whatever air is left in your lungs
it’s cooler in the cavernous aisles between pallets of supplies
        20 feet high
where I push a dustmop across the concrete floor
with forklifts zipping around flashing their lights
        & blasting air-horns

& I just keep moving inside the sweat & ache
as the sticky sweet stench of the candied vitamins that are
        produced here
permeates the sinuses so that you’ll smell it & taste it
        for days after you
say fuck it all & limp to your car without so much as an adios

the roar of the machines still ringing in your ears