COMPUTERS by Susie Field

I’m Colin the computer and I work in A and E
No one even knows my name and no one speaks to me.
I’m very stressed and overworked, I rarely take a break
I sit in line and don’t complain – it’s hard for goodness sake.
They bang my keys and spin me round, they simply do not care
Sometimes they gather in little groups, just simply stand and stare.
I always seem to get the blame when things are not quite right
But I only store what they give to me -morning, noon and night.
An x ray here, another scan and even a ruptured spleen
Dashing about here and there, switching from screen to screen.
Zooming in and zooming out, please make up your mind
Something else they must have lost or simply cannot find.

Poor Carol’s in reception and she doesn’t like that crowd.
It’s busier than ever and they’re noisy, rude and loud.
Carl has done much better, he’s sitting with a nurse
A private little office, now that must be a first.
Not a major accident or another late night fight
I clearly heard the sirens and saw a bright blue light.
They all descend on Carol who’s always first in line
I think I’ll take a breather, whilst I’ve still got a little time.
Fat chance of that ‘cos they’re heading my way
Coffee cups balanced on a wobbly tray.
Oh no she’s tripped and I’ve swallowed the lot
My insides are melting and it’s burning hot.
I splutter and spark with all my lights flashing
They cannot believe I’m actually crashing.
Their faces contort with absolute horror
Now I know they will miss me come tomorrow.

They’re wheeling in Carl to take my place
Oh the expression on his smug little face.
He cannot believe he’ll now have to work
All those duties so far he’s managed to shirk.
Darkness descends and I’m all alone
In a dusty old store room without a phone.
I can hear distant voices and lots of chatter
Everyone’s having a good old natter.
I wish I was back there in A and E
I know it was busy but it suited me.

Computers was the winning entry in the 2020 President’s competition for the poetry category.

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