Dr Queenie May, by Sally McHugh

Dr Queenie May | she/her

Dr Queenie May is an awful state
Hard working academic, a lot on her plate
Colleague of the Dean of Improbable Possibilities
A woman of integrity and acutely high abilities.
Dr Queenie May designs robust measures
Of students opinions, though not heeded, what treasures!
Nominated for excellence in research and teaching
Another honour for LinkedIn and some serious retweeting.
‘Assessing Assessment’ webinar, she needs to sign on
Dr Queenie May tells herself it won’t take long!
Committees on committees, all the day through
Four hour zooms with the camera on, troubling too.
‘Can you oblige? We have no woman for the panel
It’s an issue with which we must graciously grapple’
Committee-ing with the Dean of Desperate Dissertations
He suggests she produce some collegiate presentations.
Dr Queenie May devised a prototype app
For struggling academics, a clear word map
Her jargon generator runs on full poop
As she chairs the Diversity in Inclusive Communities sub-sub-group.
Dr Queenie May longs for time to renew,
When she can catch up on her writing, publications, reviews
When will they give her a free weekend?
Some yoga, mindfulness, time to mend.
With a string of publications, and a professorship in the bag
Dr Queenie May suffices with an odd quick shag
While the Dean of Wild and Wicked Atlantic Ways
Golfs his way around greens on yellow sunny days.
She knows no other life, bound to academia
No family, partner, children, just a house in suburbia
Grant proposals, funding, where is the time?
Dr Queenie May is driven to ‘doing a line’.
She needs an external outlet to let off steam
So she’s on Twitter as the academic dot queen
She vents her anger tweet by tweet
The Dean of Succulent Stoicism suggests they meet.
Dr Queenie May has just had enough
Time to set her generator to engender gruff
She sets the auto-reply on her phone and email
‘Sod off! I’m the new Executive Director of my own ship’s sail.’

Sally McHugh lives in the West of Ireland. She has published poems in ROPES 18 (2018) and The Blue Nib (2019).


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