Law and Order

He came up behind me on the street

and held a knife to my bare throat.

My bag was tucked under my arm

but I loosed my grip and let him

rummage inside among my things.

My wallet. With the library cards,

the raffle tickets, and some cash.

With one hand he filched the notes.

I could not see his face but heard

his breath panting on my neck.

My visa card fell to the pavement.

I felt the awkward stoop jolt me

as he picked it up. "What's this?"

he said. "What's your name?" he said.

He dragged me backwards towards

the ATM and I silently acquiesced.

I saw a woman looking at us in this

intimate embrace. In this city street.

The quizzical look you give to lovers

stealing kisses from each other like

a violent crime, a grievous bodily harm.

I struggled to speak, above the knife,

"He wants to know my name!" I said.

 

 

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