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The Judge Wore Pumps


It’s hard to look people in the eye when 

your hand and foot shackles drag you 

down but you see plenty on the scuffed 

linoleum of the corridors checked in 

schoolroom patterns of light and 

dark not white or blue anymore because 

nothing here is the way it started but is 

worn by the passing of the prison chanclas 

on your feet and the disguised running 

shoes of the dragon-slaying public defender 

who just starting tilting at dragons 

and hasn’t yet found the place to press the 

spear but the heavy cushioned shoes of

the court sheriff reflects one surprise 

of kindness as he kindly, kindly! 

helps you through the bars and

doors of a day that is only 


how does a sheriff do that? but still

your eyes fall into the deep pools

worn in the marble steps wondering 

how many scuffs does it take to curve 

the marble and you imagine standing 

there for a year endlessly twisting

on the cold stone sinking slowly 

as you watch your feet and 

then your legs 

grind away

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