Thursday July 7th, 2016

The exercise:

Write about: the police officer.

Lineup at the door of the bakery this morning. 45 minutes of madness followed. By the end of it we were sold out of cinnamon buns (all 80 that were made this morning) and most of everything else, really. We ended up closing up around noon because there were only a few slices of carrot cake left as far as baked goods went.

I'm so glad I don't work Saturdays, which is easily the busiest day of the week there.

Max and I took a drive to Cawston this afternoon to visit the chicken farm of a fellow farmers market vendor. We stocked up on whole frozen chickens and picked up 4 dozen eggs as well. Before we hit the road for home Corey let us check out the chickens, which Max got a real kick out of.

Even with skipping the market this weekend there are blackberries to be picked, so I'll be doing that tomorrow morning. We'll see how many I get and then figure out where they're going (I suspect that at least some will be eaten fresh and frozen and made into jam).


He protects his community
As best he can,
Even though all the kids just
Call him The Man -
Just an authority figure,
Never their friend.
A sometimes useful tool,
A means to an end.

He's never drawn his weapon
And hopes he never does.
He keeps his cool when they
Call him Pig or The Fuzz.
He walks his beat in the heat
And in the cold;
He cannot be bought or bribed
With sex, drugs, or gold.

He's a good, true man
Who does his best,
One small part of a team
Who outshines the rest.
They know his face all
Around this town -
So please tell me why you
Want to shoot him down?


Greg said...

Is the bakery always that busy or has it gotten especially busy lately? I'm sure you used to tell us about selling out around lunchtime, and now it seems like it's Black Friday every morning! Still, if business is that good at least you know your job is secure :)
The chicken farm sounds like fun, and getting Max to see the chickens is a good idea. I'm guessing he's not associated the cluckers with the frozen birds yet?
Great theme for your poem today, and it's quite a jaunty little poem with a nasty little sting in the tail at the end. I'd think about splitting it up into six four-line verses myself, as the middle verse had a bit of a disconnect in the scansion of the first four and second four lines, especially on "And in the cold." I think splitting the verses apart solves that problem neatly, but you may disagree. Other than that it's really good, I get a strong feeling of an old-time local cop on the beat looking out for people and really enjoyed the poem.

The policeman
Drizzle fell from the clouds like the attitude of a sullen teenager at a wedding: it was determined to be there but it wasn't going to enjoy it or let anyone around enjoy it either. The water soaked slowly through everything, be it cloth, plastic or paper, and the drains were slowly clogging up with wet, partially composted leaves. Water was sluicing down the sides of the steeper streets already, and pooling at intersections where traffic slowed down and caused tailbacks. There was a smell of must and old engine oil in the air from the sewers, and the hookers had retreated from the kerb to under shop awnings where they were disturbing the tourists who hadn't yet fled back to their hotels.
"Push along," said the policeman, a leather-gloved hand seizing a beggar roughly by the shoulder and giving him a push. He stumbled forwards, his feet tapping out an erratic rhythm, and then he caught his balance and turned round.
"Officer Grunt," said McArthur, his voice gravelly like the condemned cement mixer running illegally at the back of the Tellicherry casino in case Mad Frankie needed to exercise his temper. He sucked air through the gaps in his teeth and spat blood on to the pavement.
"Grune," said the policeman shortly. "You're disgusting, I should run you in for being a biological waste."
"Suits me," said McArthur. He held his arms out; his bony wrists stuck out of the sleeves of his too-short raincoat and looked like they belonged to a political refugee begging for food and aid. "Arrest me, Officer Grunt, for I am too poor to be innocent."
The handcuffs snapped around his wrists, and as though the click of them closing had summoned him, DI Spooney came round the corner and saw the scene.
"Uncuff him, Grune," said the DI immediately. "You do not want to put him in front of Ms Monkeybutt."
"Sure I do," said Grune. "He can go serve time in the workgangs."
"Which the city doesn't have any of," said the DI smoothly. "He'd only get a ticket for vagrancy, but it wouldn't stick."

Greg said...

"He's a bum!"
"He's McArthur."
There was silence for a moment, and then Grune, hesitating and having to rub the water out of his eyes, said, "The McArthur that Ms-"
"Monkeybutt," said McArthur.
"You know it's not pronounced like that," said DI Spooney. "Carry on Grunt. I mean, Grune."
"He's the monster that makes her hands contract into claws?"
"No such thing happens, ever," said DI Spooney smoothly again. "But if it did then it would surely be the fault of this... creature. Take the handcuffs off."
There was a faint jingle as Grune dropped the key, and then much swearing as he realised he'd dropped them down the only unblocked drain in this part of the city.
"Guess you're taking me in then," said McArthur with a grin on his face that would have impressed a lich

[Sorry, blogger decided that it was too long for a single post]

Marc said...

Greg - it's this busy in the summer, when the town is flooded with tourists. By September things will calm down again.

Yeah, I'm not sure how clear the connection between living chickens and the chicken he eats is. Or cows or pigs for that matter. I'm sure we'll have a very interesting conversation about it all someday.

Thanks for the kind words, and I think you're right about splitting it there.

I do enjoy these peeks into the city where McArthur resides, in all their disgusting glory. Though I am left feeling some sympathy for poor Officer Grunt. I mean Grune.