“The Codified Book” by Bradley Thomas

Bradley Thomas


A new computer program was put in at work
Designed to track work from the point of creation of service
Through the hands of the clerk,
The inspector, the assistant director, the director,
Through to property development, taxes, public works,
Code enforcement, and the other various service providers
That will produce a planet-size worth of paper,
All of which our constituents will find at their door.

This means you and I are all very processed human beings
If you make the slightest move
To do anything of any significance in this world
The world will throw a codified book at you,
Tailored exactly for you, consisting of documentation for
Citations, writs, notices of violations,
Late income tax notices, lien notices,
Car tax notices, property tax notices,
Military draft notices, phone bills, light bills, food bills,
Natural gas bill, propane bill, fuel oil bill, pet bill, lawyer bill,
Doctor bill, pill bill, hospital bill, psychiatrist bill,
Sanitarium bill, psychiatric hospital bill,
And finally your funeral bill, which by the grace
You won’t have to see.

from Rattle #55, Spring 2017
Tribute to Civil Servants


Bradley Thomas: “My poetry comes from all aspects of my life including my work life. The following poems were created from my 24 years as a building inspection manager and my six years of experience working in the Water Resources Department for Fulton County government in Georgia. These poems are my reflection of my experiences as a public servant.”

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