When Life Feels Like a Bailsbondsman


When Life Feels Like a Bailbondsman

It is useless to say you didn’t do it.

He’s about ten times bigger and not listening so when, after a bruising tussle, he clamps you onto a narrow board, and ties on, for good measure, an old army blanket, it’s probably best to just go slack.

To breathe deeply, except, you know, when he funnels that board into the back of an old station wagon, the motor gusting. Then you might just want to hold your breath. The blanket is your friend there.

As the board clunks against the lift gate, steel your spine against the rat-a-tat-tat, ruts in metal. Most important of all, keep, if you can, a positive outlook.

Okay, it’s hard. You hurt. It scratches.

It may help, in this regard, to think of fall leaves, the swish of your feet through dried color, the warmth of a borrowed sweater, the childhood wonder of a picked-off scab.

Cold nights, when, with the seats froze stiff, the roughest wool was somehow a picnic.
Snow blue mornings when, socks on, the whole world echoed orange.

Oh sure, it’s not ideal. Your eyes glitter in the olive scritch, but the wool smells at best like rotting grass, a field where you once fell, maybe not laughing; the board sunken rocks in that field.

Still, now as the road rumbles in steady bumps, just see if you can’t find stars–there through the coarse-grained weave, through the tan of car roof, through that outer blanket of night–

Just see if you can’t feel the wind rifling your hair, sluicing across your skin–how can the wind make it through a blanket you ask? How does it caress your cheekbones, lying flat?

You’re overthinking it, I say, telling you to just feel the freedom, and you groan, oh sure, maybe the wind is free.

And who are you anyway, you ask accusingly, to talk about all this shit.

And I sigh from the next board over, the next clump of coarse blanket, and confess, with some embarrassment, that it is just possible they will charge us with conspiracy.

But don’t worry, I add, we didn’t do it.

Here’s I-don’t-know-what kind of a piece, posted for no current prompt; just for fun of sorts. Have a good week. I am en route to city and office life tonight. (I swear that was not the inspiration for this piece!)

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17 Comments on “When Life Feels Like a Bailsbondsman”

  1. hedgewitch Says:

    I love the surreal quality here, k–it looks like prose but it reads like the wildest of poetry, or even drama, with the dialogue. I have never seen a bailbondsman as quite so sinister, since they actually get people out of jail, but here, it’s the opposite, they are being imprisoned–or are they? Is it that only by knowing limiting that there is freedom to appreciate? Anyway, everything in this is conditional, modified, ambiguous, and it works like a set of runes or even icons, to paint the mind into a corner and make it think–or maybe strap it to a board in an old army blanket. Feeling the scritch, indeed.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      You are right re bail bondsman! I don’t know why it was in my brain– from old notes I found re a criminal procedure class many years ago. But I do think they may go after someone who has jumped bail! Crazy. But my brain is not working right these days, I am afraid. Oh well. K.

  2. You are such a brilliant writer, Karin! You may have conceived this as a bit of fun – I would be proud to hang it on my wall. I am filled with admiration for your creative genius.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Well, you are such a flattering commentator, Kerry! Thanks very much for your kind words. You know they have all kinds of shows about bounty hunders which I’ve never watched, and Hedge pointed out that bail bondsmen are usually “good” figures. I did not think about this aspect of them – so didn’t really think the title through much. But will consider it in the future. (Hopefully, not firsthand.) Thanks for your sweetness and encouragement. k.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      ps – Hedge didn’t say bail bondsmen were good figures just that they got people out of the clink. But I do not think it’s good to run afoul of them! k.

  3. Susan Says:

    Of course, then there is life (referring to the bail bondsman notes above). This poem gives the sense of movement from the frying pan into the fire. I like how the commentor is the one on the next board and she knows that proximity will mean conspiracy in the public eye. If they survive the middle passage.

  4. Kay Davies Says:

    A gripping story (no pun intended). I could feel the scratchy blanket, and the bumpy ride. I was right there with your character all the way. That’s what makes a good story: reader involvement.

  5. Raining Iguanas Says:

    I was shivering on that frozen car seat…

    Excellent, my favorite of the links so far.

  6. brian miller Says:

    ha, i have a feeling you are in a bit of trouble in this. never a bail bondsman but i did work repo…and that was some scary business as you never knew what you were walking into…it def took a bit of swagger at times….still your bailbondsman, hes a scary hombre…def make me think twice on jumping….smiles.

  7. Sherry Marr Says:

    You had me at the title and I had to snicker at your disclaimer that going to the city to work is not the inspiration for this piece. Kidding aside, this is brilliant really Out There writing – the very best kind, in my book. Loved. It.

  8. Ella Says:

    I agree this is brilliant and needs to be a book or short story 😀

  9. Talicha J. Says:

    There was nothing I didn’t like about this. I enjoyed every second of the story right down to the last word. This was so easy to read, I found myself visualizing everything. Awesome work 🙂

  10. poetrydiary Says:

    I enjoyed this – without fully understanding it (I’m having to imagine what a bailbondsman is) but the description is brilliant and I read the ending as positive, being an instinctive conspiracy theorist.

  11. margaret Says:

    “It is useless to say you didn’t do it”… what a great lead in line. I am kind of hoping with all the “relaxation” exercises she is doing, she somehow has the energy to give him the slip 🙂

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