Happening Locally

Because the park has hidden the place,
the parents of fashionable dogs won’t know.

Because the grass has covered up the mud
where the knees slid, the couple holding hands won’t know.

Because the sirens are quiet, the officers
driven away, lanyards catching the last
weak sunlight, the tennis players in white shorts won’t know.

Because the boy is in the back of the van,
neck wrenched, arms wrenched, plastic
handcuffs making wheals of wrists,
ornamental ducks at the pond won’t know.

Because he promised not to do it again,
the men who sit on him, each twice his weight,
who chased until their calves wept,
the boy’s girlfriend from a distance
begging him to run, the winter sun
sat on the horizon since midday won’t know.

Because we have made this decision, I
and you and the rest of the park, to stand back,
to say nothing, to watch all this occur
as naturally as if it were the sunset
to hear the doors slam on the van
the trees moving in the silence
left by an engine, then of course
it is impossible anyone else will know.



James Appleby is the editor of Interpret Magazine. Born in 1993, his writing has been featured in Litro, Marble and others. Website:jamesapplebywriting.co.uk