Within Close Range: an evening with officer gildemeister

Been sitting here for hours,

finding haunted, frightened faces

in the station floor’s contours.

Don’t know whether to be relieved

that the next person I see,

isn’t Dad.

But I was simply standing there

when someone gave me my first beer.

Just before all hell broke loose

in the parking lot of St. Mary’s Church and School.

Everyone saw the squad car.

Everyone but me –

and the boy who got busted with a bong –

but even he’s now free.

The scene’s a constant loop in my head:

beers flying,

friends fleeing,

voices shouting,

me freezing.

Blinded by flashing.

Too late to fling it.

Too late for dashing.

Why did I leave that stupid dance?

I just went to see the band.

Hoping to spark the lead guitar’s flame,

but the flame from a first crush never came.

“Is there someone else I can call?”

I can think of one name, that’s all.

“They have to be adults,” he sneers.

“Dr. and Mrs.” I mumble.

Of course, he knows the teenage sons.

and thinks they’re nothing but trouble.

Dirty, hippy, smartass punks

with long hair and ripped jeans;

thundering laughs and motorbikes,

and EVERYTHING that he dislikes.

At last, a fast-moving figure,

in a tousled wig of blonde,

darts through the doors

with a generous smile

to face the big man with the gun.

A lady of very small stature

she is nearly eclipsed by his size.

“Are you going to tell her why you’re here?”

she looks up to the man and she smiles,

“She doesn’t have to tell me a thing.”

was all she had to say,

stunning the big, little, speechless man

bringing joy to my miserable day.

I suppress the urge to hug her.

But she’ll get a tearful later.

And I’ll be forever grateful

to Inga, my saviour.

Author: Anne Celano Frohna

I have been writing for as long as I could hold a pencil in hand and would not feel complete without it. And I actually made a meager living at it (and as an editor) for 25 years. I worked for newspapers and magazines, in graphic arts and advertising, and wrote several local history books. But I have also taught English in Japan, been a Nanny in Italy, worked in and for museums, was an Airbnb Superhost for four years, as well as an Etsy shop owner where I sold vintage items I found over the years of thrift and yard sales. After moving to Arizona with my family in 2010, I completed a series of different writing projects, including two books of creative non-fiction: Just West of the Midwest: a comedy (Based on journals I kept during my two years as an English teacher in rural Japan.) Within Close Range: short stories of an American Childhood (Short stories and poems about growing up as the middle of five children in suburban Chicago.) I've also written children's stories and continue to write short fiction, but have recently found my voice in poetry. This blog, however, is where my greatest passion comes alive. I am also a mother of two wonderful girls, Eva (23) and Sophia (21) and wife to one wonderful husband, Kurt.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: