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How to Be a Cop's Wife, a poem by Lindsey Warner

How to Be a Cop’s Wife
by Lindsey Warner
Stay to the side
as thick boots pound through rooms
bullet clicks into chamber
radio blares “42- Edward-29 copy.”
Pray everything is charged
no keys are lost
car battery isn’t dead
shirt was white

Stand for your goodbye kiss
check the pins are all on straight
breathe out as tires squeal around the corner.
In the evening, listen to faraway sirens as you fold clothes.
Slide open a drawer and hear bullets click into each other,
run your fingers under extra silver buttons and loose change
smell the acrid stench of metal polish.
The sock’s match hidden beneath a box of condoms.
Bring the socks together,
fold the tops and leave them there,
next to the soft skin of folded paper:
a drawing by the other woman’s child.

Fall asleep imagining
buttons flashing red and blue
in front of the liquid night.
Awake to the ratchet of handcuffs,
the lock on the door.

Bio: Lindsey Warner is an elementary art teacher. She has been writing poetry since she was a teenager, which gave her quite a bit of time to get all the rotten, angst-filled poetry out of her. She enjoys her creative life and her beautiful son.