Thursday, 4 January 2018

The Retirement Party

I realized over the holiday break, that I hadn't posted a rhyming satirical poem in quite some time and I thought that it might be nice to start the less-than-highly-anticipated year 2018 off, on the lighter side.  This is an old poem - that I thought needed a bit of a dust-off and rejig.  I also added the final three stanzas.  It was inspired by a retirement party I attended, where a much loved lady was not only retiring, but was also leaving the city.  No one wanted to see a mass exodus before the guest of honor departed.  Unfortunately, she didn't seem inclined to go.  It was an epic 'good-bye' - lots of tears and lots of hugs - but, as it finally ... finally ... began winding down, most of the people present - including the retiree - were laughing. 

We felt the pressure to pumped –
so when the Good-byes finally clomped 
through two dozen toasts and one thousand wishes,
on carrot-cake-sauvignon-blanc infused kisses
all of us there . . . flat as tires . . . sans air . . .
fizzled – and slumped – into our seats:
content to be zapped, sapped dead beats.

But then, just when,
we thought, we ought – to try and
sputter back again,
or, at least, get on our feet –
and roll on home
down down-hill-street
DRAT ! ! !   the Good-bye girl was back . . . 
dispensing – yet more hugs at that. 

It seemed the woman did not know
the concept of go – go go go.
Apparently, she’d left her purse . . . so . . .
the first Good-byes, we’d just rehearsed.
(It looked like this could take all night.
Or, ‘til we got Good-bying right.)

Good-bye, Good-bye, Good-bye – again:
All aboard:  the Good-bye Love Fest Train.
She Good-byed-Good-byed round the floor. 
Good-bye, Good-bye.  Oh Look – the door.
At last it felt like she might go.
Gawd knows – we prayed:  let it be so.
We really mean Good-bye, you know.

Good-bye, Good-bye, Good-bye.
 Just . . . Go ! ! ! 

When – FINALLY – she cleared the door:
“Gawd spare us, from a third encore,”
a frail voice whimpered from the floor.

“Turn off the lights and bolt the door.”
“Sh-h-h-h . . . no one speak – not one word more.”

But, for a sigh, heaved now and then . . .
silence fell on the darkened den . . . 
when all at once, came a haggard curse . . .
and someone screamed:  “Is this her purse?”

photo:  retirement photo/graphic - W. Bourke 

© 2018 Wendy Bourke 


  1. This was actually rather humorous, especially the ending. Thanks for making me smile.

  2. This is hilarious Wendy! In the excitement did she really forget to take back the purse she came for. Or was she teasing everyone to frightfully expect to see her walk in for another round of good-byes again?


  3. This really made me smile, Wendy. I could picture the scene all so very well... I am not a fan of those long good-byes. When people are leaving, they should leave expediently. And when I am leaving, I do the same. LOL. None of this long and drawn out stuff for me!

  4. I love the playfulness in this poem

  5. LOL!! I like the way you've say carrot-cake-sauvignon-blanc infused kisses ... sets the tone perfectly!

  6. LOL what a fun write

    Happy New Year Wendy

    much love...

  7. Ha.. I do love the humor in this, as well as all the use of ellipses that really made that hesitation stand out. It's hard to part I think.

  8. Yes, I had a really good laugh at that scene in your poem Wendy.

  9. Vividly drawn and drawn out this long goodbye.

  10. I love the humor in this one, Wendy!💞 Thank you for the delightfulness that this poem is!💞

  11. We come and go and chat and play......let the life be...happy!!

  12. I giggled when I got to the end. It is wonderful she was so well loved by you all that you indulged her long goodbye.

  13. Thank for a smile or two, and good way to begin this, almost certain, dreadful new year!

  14. This is HILARIOUS. She must have really liked her workmates and knew the goodbye was I LOVE the frail voice whimpering from the floor, and the final shriek "Is that her PURSE?"

  15. Oh Wendy that was perfection! I burst out laughing at the end....and was on the edge of my seat throughout waiting for her to GO!!! You do have a way with satire.

    1. Thanks, Donna. Actually I started writing satire and have written quite a bit of it. I just find it so much fun and it never fails to lighten my mood. Unfortunately, it is not really in style poetically any more, and it never really found a 'home' - though last year I finally got a couple of pieces published by The Society of Classical Poets and that went a long way towards reigniting my enthusiasm to get back into it.

  16. Oh this is so funny and well written. I chuckled through the read. Thanks for this. I needed a good laugh.

  17. Fun to write, I'm sure, and fun to read. I loved the carrot-cake-sauvignon-blanc infused kisses", and the final three verses make it even better.

  18. This is the first poem I've read today, and I'm so glad for it. I am still laughing. Love the new stanzas in particular. Perhaps, because many of us have been there--half-dead and praying for the party to over (even if it was very nice).

  19. Ha..ha...the ending was so funny. Goodness I hate long goodbyes!