CEO & Janitor, Too

by Eric Chaet

I’m CEO, & janitor, too.

I try to live righteous & kind
but I have to be as cunning
as the most hard-hearted dealer
& remain detached when babies of all ages
attack me with their crying.

I’m a warlord & a casualty
of the never-ending human civil war—
some of my wounds will never heal
& some of my gains I’ll never surrender.

I’m a capitalist & exploited near to death
a prince & a pauper—
I’m not a liberal or conservative
I don’t defend the regime
& I’m not trying to overthrow it—
there are regimes within regimes.

I don’t want to fight or compete with you
but if you insist, guess who I think will triumph?

I’m older than I was, younger than I’ll be.

I have more power than people imagine
but it’s nowhere near enough power to protect me
from a plague, conflagration, or nuclear explosion.

There’s no guarantee
that what I manage to put into effect will last.

But take a look underneath the fancy shows
generation after generation:
this is what succeeding looks like.

Tho, of course, it’s all temporary
& if you run out of cash, they’ll eat you alive.

I’m CEO, & janitor, too.

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