#Poetrychallenge – Exploitation, a haibun

Resentment and anger made poor bedfellows . They stole the pleasure from the day, creeping relentlessly across her mind like a slow eclipse of the sun. It was time to take back control of her life. Time to make a change.

She never imagined her life could become this unfulfilling and frustrating. Getting up early every day and trying to behave as if everything was normal.

Outside the walls of her home, the world had turned itself upside down. Masked strangers roamed the streets, ringing on doorbells asking for food to fill empty bellies or trying to sell some unnecessary and unwanted item to the impatient and irritated inhabitants of the houses. There were no jobs and the poor and uneducated were desperate and verging on starvation.

Within the walls of her familiar home, her own life had become a nightmare of relentless stress as her working days grew longer and longer. More and more demands were made on her until one day she’d awoken to the unexpected realisation that exploitation and abuse of human rights comes in many forms. The shocking understanding dawned that she was a pathetic pawn in the corporate game where no-one mattered and no employee ever won.

Pressing the send button, her resignation letter left her email box.

To late she learned

That undue quickness of mind

Mixed with compassion

Creates the perfect cocktail

For endless exploitation

This haibun was written for Colleen Chesebro’s poetry challenge. You can join in here: https://colleenchesebro.com/2020/09/01/colleens-2020-weekly-tanka-tuesday-poetry-challenge-no-193-poetschoice/

52 thoughts on “#Poetrychallenge – Exploitation, a haibun

        1. Oh, sorry Colleen. I haven’t quit yet. It is a complicated situation as there are very few people with my skill set in South Africa and I have been at my company for over 20 years so there are all sorts of loyalty and relationship issues. I can’t go on as I am though. It is exhausting me.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I know what you mean, Robbie. My sister told me once that we (me included) are paid for the responsibilities, not by the hours. My supervisors took works home for the evenings and weekends. She even decided early on, not to have children because she wanted to devoted her time to work. Her husband supported her. She’ll regret that in her old age. She works longer hours and demands more from administrators and teachers. Not too many people like her and they are not her friends. She’ll be so lonely in her old age.
            You’re right, Robbie. Even professionals should just leave the work in the office for the sake of themselves and for others who work with them.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Yes, a young principal at my former school, singe, asks teachers to check her emails every two hours. That’s crazy, teachers have to teach, do yard duties, go to the restroom, or breathe between classes.

            Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Marje, my work is a nightmare at the moment and I have been working very long hours under a lot of pressure. The doctor has said that I have stress related high blood pressure. I am considering what to do as my work situation is a bit complex.


  1. When is the line crossed? Sometimes it’s hard to define. But living should not be a burden. Continuous anger is a hard way to live. And your life should not belong to your employer. Good luck Robbie. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have been lucky enough in the past when I felt I no longer was appreciated that I could leave jobs…

    The other day my hubby asked if we had duct tape – that ever useful tape that works for so many things…
    He wanted to wrap it around his head to stop it from exploding. Some of the customers he works with are rather dense when he tries to tell them how to fix a particular engineering solution their problem.

    I hope you can set some boundaries like I only work from x hour to x hour… sometimes even overtime pay isn’t worth the hassle. Sometimes when my hubby is on call (for two or three week stretches…) he is on call for 24/7. But at least he does get paid for that time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Shame, your poor hubby. I have that at work too, but its more with junior colleagues than clients. At least he is paid for the overtime. In corporate it is assumed to be integral to the job. For the senior staff, in any event. Junior staff don’t seem to do much at all.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hubby’s first job, he’d worked up to that no extra pay status. When he switch jobs he made sure he was hourly. They finally got rid of a guy who wasn’t doing so good. But until a good replacement is found, trained etc the folks that are left have ‘double time’ so-to-speak. Hopefully though we are counting the years to retirement. But then some Management just turns a deaf ear to the needs of the employees.

        Liked by 1 person

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