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  • Writer's pictureMario Mainland


Updated: Dec 19, 2022

The sun peeks inside,

a broken siren stuck on red

vanguard of tomorrow’s dread

scaring ghosts pulling at my sheets

and chasing demons perched upon my bed

and all the monsters lurking underneath-

I wake to whistles of kettles and tweets

I stumble to the basin and brush my teeth

I wash my face still tired from the day before

I dress and see my shiny brown boots

are waiting by the door.


The sun stares at me,

an unblinking cyclops eye

judge of nightmares and peaceful dreams

a branding iron looming in the morning sky

a cosmic puppeteer tugging at my seams-

I startle as I’m whipped to my feet,

I ignore the dirty marks on my cheek

I run for the taxi hooting in the street

I start early, I finish late, but I stay poor

counting the days till the end of the week,

and in the twilight of the day

I see my old brown boots

are shiny no more.


The sun always rises,

immortal beacon of burden…

But today!

I’ll resign and burn my suits,

I’ll bet and raise till I bust,

I’ll sip expensive bourbon,

and give my boots away!

Tired and covered in dust,

out of sight, out of my mind

their soles forever smoothed

by the Monday to Friday grind.


The daily cycle of work and responsibility never ends, whether we decide to get out of bed or not.

It's like the ocean tides, sometimes high from praise or promotion, sometimes low due to failure or self-doubt, or even heartbreak. The only constant is the ebbing that never ceases, or the rhythm of the sun as it peeks over the horizon and into your bedroom - like a puppet master that compels you to your feet.

The first stanza talks about ghosts tugging at sheets. These specters are the memories of yesterday or the problem you haven't dealt with yet. The demons are the known issues of the day ahead, perhaps occupying your subconscious, and the monsters are the unknown troubles yet to be discovered.

The second stanza is deeper into the work week when pressures accumulate; startling awake, ignoring dirt on your cheek, the same as ignoring health and relationships, and running to beat traffic.

The third is about the realization of the nature of the cycle, an epiphany that you are more than a cog in a system, and that spurs you to make a change. Take a risk and change jobs or even career if need be. But if you must stay where you are, whatever your role, do it as if you are, or are aiming to be the best in the world. It’s all about mindset, and if your 9-5 isn’t your passion, then find something outside of work worth pursuing so that the daily grind doesn't wear away at your soul.

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