What Do They Think?

by Bruce Maples

What do they think,
    These captains of industry,
    When they sell out their workers,
What do they think?

What do they think,
    These directors of boards,
    When they cancel the pensions,
What do they think?

Do they say to themselves
    “It was all we could do”?
Do they mention the markets,
    And labor costs, and competition,

As they vote the vote
And close the deal
And sign the papers in triplicate
And shake hands all around.

Do they go home that night
And greet their wives, and kiss their kids,
And act as if it was just another day?
Or do they sit in their chair, a drink in their hand,
    And wonder …

Wonder if it could have been different.
    Wonder if they could have tried harder.
    Wonder if they did the right thing.

What do they think,
    These deciders of fates,
    As they brush their teeth and turn off the light
    And lay their head on the pillow?

I like to think they wonder, just a little bit.
I like to think they think about it, for a while.

But maybe they don’t.

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