‘The Data Quality Analyst’s Lot’ by Hilaire


For every if, an else, a then.
For every cursor, a loop that ends.
Each open bracket must be closed;
so single quotes must come in pairs
and double quotes—ditto. Her joy
is found in datasets, in structured queries
and parsed syntax. Wild cards flourish
within her fields, while table by table
she builds her joins on left or right,
eschewing Cartesian product for defined
results. No variables are undeclared.
These are the parameters of her daily grind.
Before the screen her face is blank.
Outside the binary, her life is null.
Hilaire reads ‘The Data Quality Analyst’s Lot’ on SoundCloud.
Hilaire has published short stories and poetry in magazines such as Magma, Brittle Star, South Bank Poetry and Under the Radar, and in several anthologies. Triptych Poets: Issue One (Blemish Books, Australia, 2010) features a selection of her poems. She is currently working on a poetry collection with Joolz Sparkes, London Undercurrents, unearthing women’s voices north and south of the river. Twitter: @Xilaire