infant he sucked my nipple as I lay
the hospital. Fifteen, single.
lived two years in Mrs. Eliot’s home,
I met and married Steve, Ted
home, and we, Steve and I
him a younger brother and sister.
good enough for law school,
was proud, someday maybe for Ted
firstborn, politics. Today I sit
court with others, in Florida. Ted,
own defense lawyer, wears a suit,
bow tie. I slap prosecutor hard
the mouth, at least in my mind.
blood boils how he lies:
VW bug, the cast-crutch sympathy
A hammer-rope rape kit,
escapes, a twelve-year-old victim,
sorority rampage, bludgeoned
this subhuman savage. Sex
the dead, the victims’ mothers
in court, as I am, weeping, only
child is here, his own attorney.
worked a suicide hotline. A clerk
law firm, nothing amiss. In jail
in a jailhouse jumpsuit,
leaned across a table and looked
my eyes. I didn’t do it, Mother.
Peter Mladinic’s fourth book of poems, Knives on a
Table, is available from Better Than Starbucks Publications. An animal rights
advocate, he lives in Hobbs, NM.
paintings and collages have
appeared in shows at various venues in Manhattan, including
the Back Fence in Greenwich Village, the Producer’s Club, the Black Door Gallery
on W. 26th St., and one other place she can’t remember, but it was in
a basement, and she was well received.