Patrick Biggs: Class Reunion

Ten years have passed-–ten years since graduation,
And once again, I tread familiar ground;
Again behold these halls of education,
Wherein the ghosts of hopes and dreams abound.
How has my brambly path through life compared
With other paths whose starting point mine shared?

Donovan Jones, the first fifteen's star flanker,
Bullied his way to top dog in the yard.
Since leaving school, he's turned investment banker,
And bullies boards with equal disregard.
I hope to see his stocks and bonds decline
Until he's homeless, begging with a sign.

Tom Parker peddled pot and rode a chopper
And all the girls hung off his leather jacket.
Today our causeless rebel is a copper,
Enforcing law where once he would attack it.
I hope that as he goes about his job
He's viciously assaulted by a mob.

Lydia Rose, the belle of every ball,
Whose fervid eyes could melt a heart of flint,
Purchased a failing salon in the mall,
And five years later, sold it for a mint.
I hope that when she leaves some lavish party
She tipsily writes off her Maserati.

Myself, I was an acne-studded virgin
Who laboured hard for every passing grade.
I thought I'd be a barrister or surgeon.
I ply instead a low and menial trade.
A dismal fact a drudge like me bemoans is
It's difficult to keep up with the Joneses.

The urge to Envy's manifestly ugly –
Malignantly it rots a person through –
But do not judge me, reader, quite so smugly,
For am I all that different from you?
We're glad for the success of those we've known,
Provided it does not exceed our own.