Big Jack

His father beat him,
With anything around,
Preferring doubled over and rusty barbed wire.
Jack would grit his teeth and take it,
He wasn’t giving in.

At twenty-one,
While working on a power pole,
He received a shock which would kill any man,
Which killed him –
Until being dropped while carried down the pole,
Started his heart again.
He wasn’t giving in.

At hospital they removed a charred arm and leg.
Photos show him lying in bed,
With a smile that went from ear to ear.
He wasn’t giving in.

Working through the week and helping others on weekends,
He never complained and never asked for help.
Early mornings he could be seen,
Beads of sweat on his brow,
As he tied his shoelace,
A challenge with one hand.
He wasn’t giving in.

He raised children,
Then raised grandchildren too.
Worried that he might not make it until those who needed him were grown.
He wasn’t giving in.

One he treated like a second son,
Would think of no other name for his own child,
Than the only man who inspired him,
The one who wouldn’t give in.

Swelling in the spine,
Confined to a chair,
He still works from sun up.
Worried that time off for surgery,
Will mean that his granddaughter who lives with him will do without.

Big Jack –
He isn’t giving in.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
24 February 2013


Old people will tell you,
the most comfort comes not from love,
comes not from companionship,
but emanates from the cold,
methodical drone of routine.

Keep your excitement,
your thrills,
your desire for the unknown.
These do not compare to a hot coffee,
followed by toast,
each and every uneventful day.

Knowing where your feet fall from the bed,
into your old slippers there,
where you carefully left them the night before.

Going to the same diner,
where the same cook,
who knows your name,
gets your meal  –
right or wrong –
just the same,
every time.

Consistency can be depended upon,
unlike people.

In a world of chaos,
routine provides some semblance of order,
of structure,
of meaning,
of purpose.

You will understand,
given enough time –
and chaos.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
22 February 2013

The Brothel

She looked in the mirror,
Noticing with regret,
That her breasts continued to sag,
Her stomach dropped over her knickers.
Having children is hard on the body,
She thought.

We must keep them from putting a brothel in our town,
Referring back to a conversation of the day before.
It could be too great a challenge for our men,
For my man.

She grasped for excuses,
But few could be found.
“This is a ‘family-oriented’ community” was one angle,
She was too intelligent to believe this herself,
As she knew that many families,
many relationships,
were started in brothels.
That excuse might do for the less enlightened,
She thought,

“Brothels will increase crime”,
She thought with a grin.
She had no proof for this statement,
But what did it matter?
Some would buy into it.
A similar argument had not been made when the casino came to town,
As she herself loved gambling.

“There is no history of brothels in our town” –
This one she liked.
It had the weight of history,
And the most simple-minded fall back on the status quo.
It didn’t matter if she had researched the matter or not,
For she knew they would not either.

So much fear that her husband would be tempted,
She did not consider those without partners,
With no one for physical contact.
She did not consider their difficulties in having to go to another town,
To satiate the desire for contact with another person.
Her needs were paramount,
Theirs were irrelevant.

She feared what she saw as a threat,
She did not consider the possibility,
That any of these people could be compassionate,
That any of these people might be driven by the same motivation,
Which led her to counsel others all those years ago.

Her disgust for her own body,
Was projected onto them.
Her insecurities about her sexual abilities,
Were channelled into her trumped up sense of a good cause.

She looked in the mirror,
Noticing with regret,
That her breasts continued to sag . . .

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
21 February 2013


Andrew is in the corner,
Trying to hump a visitor.

John is standing at the front of the room,
Shouting at everyone,
Telling them they are worthless,
Spittle coming down his chin.

Mary and Rebecca are sitting together,
Gossiping about those around.

James is trying to reach into pockets,
To see what shiny coins he can take from the unsuspecting.

Matthew is looking around the room in disgust,
Feeling superior to all others.

Luke looks out the window,
At the families going past.
His thoughts are not suitable for mention here.

Paul is pulling the wings off bugs,
With a pocket full of victims.

Mark is hitting those in nearby seats,
Swinging his feet at them as well.

Only the most sick and demented are kept here,
Whose leader is a vicar, a priest or a minister.
At first glance it may seem that his job is to sedate,
But it is rather to promote the madness which has them confined here.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
19 February 2013

The Greatest Freedom

The greatest freedom is yours and mine,
They do not want you to know it,
They do not want to realise it themselves.

They imagine that freedom is bullshit like speaking words,
So much meaninglessness.
They do not truly value their freedom,
Because they realise these acts are of themselves without value.

The greatest freedom,
The greatest choice,
The greatest power,
It is in your hands,
It is in mine.

Exercising this freedom,
This most precious of choices,
Can only be practiced once,
But is also practiced daily.

Try to appease yourself with speech,
Similar irrelevancies.

Some realise true freedom is in their own hands,
Always has been,
And –
Remains their greatest choice.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
18 February 2013

Awesome is not

The papers today are filled with news,
of a Presidential Decree in the U.S. of A.
As of midnight tonight,
There will be no more “awesome” in the land of Uncle Sam.

It seems that this word has been overused,
Has worn out its welcome on those shores.

Too lazy to consult a thesaurus –
“What is that?”, many ask.
Too uneducated to expand either the vocabulary or the mind,
The populace has been going around saying “awesome” in all circumstances.
From weddings,
To parties,
To ceremonies,
To academic events.

Debate rages over when this pest took hold in the vernacular of the people.
Credible sources say it gained prominence from lazy surfer lingo during the eighties.
Others say it was the term of choice of simplistic Republicans (which accounts for most of them).

The President has decided that the use of this term,
Carries a prison sentence.
This serves the dual purpose,
Of freeing the populace from “awesome”,
And helping to increase employment in the largest job place in America.

So, before midnight tonight, my fellow Americans,
get your awesome fix,
of most awesome usage,
in the most awesome proportions,
for as of tomorrow morning,
you will land in the most awesome jail,
and that will certainly not be awesome.

The President suggests that the citizenry become acquainted with a thesaurus,
Expanding our vocabulary beyond that of the average nine year old.
That will be all.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
18 February 2013

Religion is

Religion is a fraternity joke,
From the boys at Bethlehem University.
Thought up over a goat-skin of wine,
A prank for the ages.

Religion is a trumped up charge,
From the town bike in Nazareth.
No idea who the father was,
So no sense claiming the noblest in town,
When you can blame god himself.

Religion is a tool of sadists,
With murderous Saul leading the pack.
No reason to look for work,
When with appeals to superstition,
You can live off the backs of slaves.

Religion is an appeal to the basest nature of man,
Who would rather be guided by fear,
By shame of self,
By hatred of others,
Rather than looking for the good,
Within and without.

Religion is the codification,
The sanctification,
The organisation,
The institutionalisation,
Of all that is weak,
And fearful in man.

Religion is a joke of the gods,
Who – if they existed – would be laughing,
At the gullibility of man.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Banks Peninsula NZ
17 February 2013

Never moved on

He tried to save his child from a sinking car,
Losing an arm in the effort,
But gaining a few last hours together,
In a dark and crowded hospital.
It was worth it,
He thought.

His wife couldn’t stand to look at him,
Even though the paramedics said no one could have saved the child,
She still despised him for not giving more.
Seeing the stump reminded her of failure,

In time they broke up,
As so many do,
Fading memories for her,
But clear ones for him.
All he had to do was look down at his empty sleeve.
And memories – good and bad – flooded back.
He cherished his stump,
It kept his memories alive,
And he knew pride in his love.

Some say he never moved on.

His friends tried to talk him into getting a plastic limb,
He couldn’t open beers on his own,
He couldn’t get a woman.
So many things would be easier.

Some say he never moved on.

Visiting his house one day,
His ex-wife,
The mother of his child,
Scoffed at the way he lived –
beer bottles everywhere.

She said he never moved on.

The day their child died,
He drove out in the rain,
Because she was too busy drinking with friends,
To pick the child up before the rain started.

She said he never moved on.

He finally managed to stay sober and get a job,
On a flight his plane went down over water.
He would have made it,
the rescue workers said,
but for that missing arm.

He never moved on.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
15 February 2013

A Family Man

I entered his office early one Monday morning,
My feet swelling within these business shoes,
Designed not for comfort or even appearance,
But rather torture devices,
Cutting into my heels and binding my toes.

He smiled and stood,
Appearing to be at attention,
His smile pasted on,
I saw a semblance to a mannequin in the shop just passed.
He motioned that I should take a seat.

He began reading my resume,
As one would read a comic strip to a child.
I looked around his office,
To see certificates which could be bought and printed at home.
Photos of family,
Which seemed to be the ones used to sell frames.

The boredom was almost unbearable,
The attempts at communication forced.
He then said, “Are you a family man?”

“What the fuck is a ‘family man’?”,
I thought to myself.
I am a man,
I have a family.

“What is a family man?”, I asked,
With the straightest of faces.
He looked shocked,
With his chest collapsing.

“Perhaps you are not the sort of person we want!”
I responded that I would be happy to become a family man,
If it would help me land the job.

He sat at his desk,
Such a smug, little bastard.
I was sure his wife had never walked out on him,
Cuckold perhaps, but never aware.
He had his bored but dutiful wife,
A car full of kids,
Perhaps a campervan in the driveway,
For those idyllic family holidays.

He would live a few more years,
But his heart had already stopped.
Feeling so secure in his illusion,
He has forgotten to feel as another man.

If this is what his outdated concept of “family man” meant,
He could keep it,
Along with the menial job he offered and the one he held himself.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
15 February 2013

The Perfect Woman

He met her at seventeen.
She promised to love him forever,
Then promptly disappeared.

He met her at twenty.
She proceeded to fill his life with boredom
and demands for pity.

He met her at thirty.
She decided that fidelity didn’t exclude friends
and he stayed home to watch the kids.

He met her at fifty,
Or so she said.
Fuck this shit,
I am better off alone,
Than to put up with continuous mental games,
Just for a bit of friction against my cock.

He now lives alone,
In a small place,
Where there is peace.
No demands for recognition,
No demands for compliments,
No fucking mind games to help settle emotional states.
One coffee cup in the cupboard,
Peace throughout.

Sure, he might not be found for days after death,
But that is a small price to pay for peace now.
If only he could tell that seventeen year old boy,
What he knows now.

The perfect woman is with him now,
sitting in the empty chair across from his morning coffee.

Gerald Lee Jordan
Diamond Harbour NZ
15 February 2013