We’ve been missing you

The pews weren’t even half full –

“My mother,” HR said to me
her youthful words dancing forth
from between her painted lips,
“Finally saw the light.” 

I had been on the job one week
and listened carefully about
a series of step-fathers
next to the office aquarium 

HR again, this time about an interviewee
“It’s not that she is too old,” she explained
as we stood in front of the dishwasher
also seriously in need of an update

It reminded me -  
the congregation trying their hardest
to sing the tune, mouths stumbling
across the words in the hymn book
Here I am Lord

My new boss strolled casually behind my chair
“We’ve been missing you,” she murmured low
“Really?” I thought, considering the summing-up 
that had begun the exit count down on day one

uncomfortable in my best gray suit 
I watched a single sheet of paper passed 
to-hand, from-hand along the row of desks
as specified by the boss: this one's for her

a letter of termination 
to be scanned and dispatched
so get ready Ms. A