A briefcase of memories
One solitary over-ripe apple baked in the heat and stifled by its own banality.
The odours of books, leather and fruit.
A vapid, pervasive, emptiness.
A purposeful facade that deceives keen onlookers
But can’t conceal the profound ache
that ebbs and flows throughout each working day.
Compartments of lack; a lament for unfulfilled potential
You were indefatigable in your daily toil, your need to serve
and you deserved a world that reciprocated.
This prose piece was inspired by my father’s brown leather briefcase that I so keenly remember. He worked in a job that he was over-qualified for and under-appreciated in and despite leaving an imprint on many people, he never got the chance to fulfill his potential in a career of his choice. I remember opening the suitcase to reveal what he took for lunch each day, (a few pieces of fruit) and thinking about how he must have felt going to work each day, feeling a sense of emptiness, worrying about how to pay the petrol on the way home and knowing that he wasn’t fulfilling his full potential. The piece reflects a quintessential struggle many migrants experience: having to compromise their own desires in a new country in order to provide for their family.