Jail Time

The heavy iron door slid shut
made a loud clang, ringing in our ears
as their footfalls echoed
down the corridor
locking the four of us
safely away from the November, chill.
The interior gloom
enhanced only by them allowing us
to remain for the moment together.
Each girl watched the other for signs
of weakness. Would our resolve
hold up or drip like warm yellow Jell-O and discharge
into a sticky puddle on the cold, cement floor.
We had made up fake names and addresses.

For a brief moment, we actually thought
we would be rescued, the twins, Marty, her skinny
sister, Mary, Dawn, and I had run away
from nothingness into the adventure
of anywhere else.
Let’s go to Florida!
It had been a wild ride all right
meeting up with my Italian
friend in Passaic, her family
had a summer house across the street and
ending just outside of D.C. on a restricted
highway. Picked up for hitchhiking.

The fuzz gave us some new bracelets
to wear, took us to the county lock-up
on the way, chained together with a black
boy telling me “Don’t cry now
”it’ll be alright
in the morning” his smooth
southern drawl reminding us
that we had almost made it to freedom.
The police commanded us to heed their invitation
thaw out while they called
Marty’s brother in Florida
to come pick us up.
Only Marty’s bro
never showed
I guess he had
other plans.
Stirring my resolve into mush
So, I told them who I was, the others soon followed.
Dawn’s mother, our girl scout troop leader
showed up after we spent four days on the girls side
of the youth detention center.
It only took a week
before I hit the streets again.
This time I had a ride.

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