My wife had a pretty frustrating time today
trying to use my computer to send an email.
She is not used to my steam-driven machine,
and dislikes having to keep the boiler fired
and the mouse fed, as she hates any rodent.
Besides, shoveling coal is not her forte, she says—
in the words of Al Purdy—”with a minimum of boredom.”
She was on my ultra slick streamlined machine
because her old wood-fired cast-iron model
a 486 with an amber monitor running DOS
(no mouse, don’t you see?)
had finally croaked—either that, or its
parchment warranty in the original hieroglyphics
had finally expired. You think I exaggerate:
John, down at good old JL Computers
(We fix what we sell; we fix what we didn’t sell)
tells me that my three year old computer
is older than I am in computer years,
so I can sympathize. “With a minimum of boredom,” Al.
[Al, on of the great “working class” Canadian poets, used the phrase in his wonderful poem about domestic life, “Bathtub Beer”. It does not come up when you Google it, so I expect it has never appeared on the Internet. A shame. Al’s work usually had a very distinctive rhythm and tone. You should hear Susan Musgrave do her impression of Purdy. Susan stayed in our home once, when she toured schools through our region.]