The Winking Badge

from by Midwestern Medicine



Brand new face on the force
Tattooed man told to laugh more

Now, outside of the bricks,
I’m hauling in a special guy
Red flags in the wind
a crooked audience conspires
I'm taking it in,
connecting faces to the files
I'm starting the car

“The scanner in your shop room’s saying something
hostile ‘bout your home
Better let the boss know someone’s getting
shot now, where’s the phone?”

Shot down.
Just following threads
that were deliberately unspooled
And taped to my desk,
they guessed too right that I'm a fool
Spent time in a trunk,
now I’m the audience for
Monologues in a warehouse

And that familiar, evil face says:
“Your predecessor’s threat-assessment found the
fault line in your folds
He sniffed too hard on clues and found himself
a blue man, stiff and cold”

With the gun now raised to punctuate, he finds a
line he thinks is cool
He says, “I hafta tell ya, jealous elders do not
like that brand of bold”

Catapulted into color-blasted, cartoon kinda world
Watching hovered hand start landing on the Don’t-Push-That Control
But he doesn’t know what the button is for
His fingers have circled it since he was born

"I’m the shine of the winking badge."

Pushed down! Dropped in from above,
except I’m in a different time
I’m holding the cuffs,
about to book a special guy
And now a buzz in the ear
Is saying something ‘bout a bribe
Well, I guess I’ll comply.


from The Winking Badge, released December 13, 2018


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