Tuesday Poem – Checkout by Trevor Hayes


I’m all lost in the supermarket
I can no longer shop happily…

                                                    The Clash

After hours of listening to barcodes chirping
mental notes to themselves. All that time
smiling at an elderly aunty to somebody, anybody
who’d listen. After infinite I.D. checks and eftpos
transactions. Endless packing & stocking & presenting.
After the deli manager at the staff party.
After the spillages in aisle three. After the incident
in the produce department when finally
the managers were called in.
It was time.

Trolley Holiday - geograph.org.uk - 298467
Image by Colin Grice

I’m delighted to be able to post one of Trevor Hayes’ poems for this week’s Tuesday poem.  I’m intrigued by the staff party and “the incident in the produce department” but maybe it’s best not to know…

Trevor tells me his first job out of school was in a supermarket and he is still recovering!  He is currently working on the final stages of what he hopes will be the manuscript of his first book.  I’m looking forward to reading it.


  1. I have two daughters who have both worked in supermarkets – they had lots of interesting stories to tell. Some were definitely of the “best not to know” variety!

  2. Maybe somebody will write a poem about the “how’s your day been/what have you got on for the weekend/doing anything special” chatter they give you when you just want to pay and go?

  3. Oh, aren’t first jobs always memorable? They stick with you for a long time. I love the two incidents where you are left wanting to know. Fabulous down-to-earth poem! Thanks for posting!

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