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Poles Apart

No, not a clever title for a poem or screenplay
Recounting the tragic tale of two eastern European lovers
Torn apart by blitzkrieg greed and the unhinged mentality
Of an Austrian Corporal with a ridiculous facial hair proclivity –
His cracked mirror should have told him
That Julius, Atilla, Alexander and Ghengis
Would never have made emperor with an upper lip like his.
No, not these parted Poles,
But rather the gulf between
Normally execrable French administration
And the near-nigh perfection
Of their hospital organisation.

Teach from ‘La Rentrée’, first week of September,
Through to Noel at the dark end of December,
Then pray and hope against hope they’ll remember
To divvy up your salary some many months later.

To register your car you’ll need a plan of campaign:
Five visits later – you’ll be going again,
With some paper or other they’ve had and now lost:
They call the tune –
You count the cost.

But hospital seems their one and only exception
To endemic administrative disaster and deception:
When it needed it most, the care was there –
The administrative canines weren’t even bared.