Red Read

     My son Aaron drew this, circa 1981

Last week I had a day off–yippee!–to go to Traffic Court. 
As I drove along in the car, I ‘wrote’ this poem–I put it on paper when I got home.

Traffic court assembly
A crew, United Nations-like
Standing in a not-line waiting to see
The Judge.
I’m here about my red car
That (they say) ran a red light,
Thanks to the ever-ready camera.
I’ve come to differ.
Surviving the intrusion of airport security
Come to this small town clerk’s room,
We file in; I sit front and center,
Ever the eager “See me? I want an A” student.
Not long to wait—
I’m alphabetically blessed–
Capital letter C.
I lean over to the young girl next to me
Penning her grocery list,
“I hope they don’t show those insidious videos here
In front of everyone. That would be embarrassing.”
I’m blushing red at the thought.
“That’d be like standing in front of God
At the bench, having the whole world view your life.”
She rolls her  eyes in response,
Exhales through rounded lips
A pregnant “Whoa………” of worry at the thought.
I recall my Pastor’s message from yesterday
And the words roll out before I can retrieve them,
“I’m glad that Jesus covers it all for me.”
Mr. Your Honor the Judge calls my name.
After reviewing the tape he declares,
“Mrs. C, the evidence is insufficient and because of
A technicality, your fine is dismissed. 
There is no need to pay.”
I think about The Judge
who’s passed my sentence onto His Son
And writes in red, “Dismissed.”
c. 2012  Jody Lee Collins


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