A briefcase in a town hall
that has a sandwich
and a phone number to call.

It has a pencil, calculator,
ledger, a notebook,
a book to read on break.

The numbers of a murder victim,
forensics, and litigator.
To top it off, juror five hates you.

You found out dad has cancer.
The judge, the great deliberator,
hates your client, used to date her.

Does that make it a hostile courtroom?
Throw the book at her, the one
that you read to her in your bedroom.

Great opening testimony.
a little grief, some hegemony.
Something like Billy Idol, singing
Monie, Monie, Monie.

Let’s lay out the story for you.
Your client, she’s in for murder two.
She says she didn’t do it.

And you have the evidence to prove it.
But you just can’t get past the sadness.
The world is numb, this world is madness.

You don’t have the strength
to argue. You’re pretty bad,
aren’t you?

You drink too much,
a sex addict, when not in court
you’re at your baddest.

You went to law school
because you wanted to.
But after years of cases,

some wins and losses,
and everything that it costs us,
you really would rather

just drink and watch
it all go away, a ship
without you on it.


Jason Wright is the editor and founder of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly. His third book, Train of Thought 2: Almost Home is available now at the Oddball Book Store.