The line begins to form
at the buzz of the prison fence door.
We march behind the razor wire,
and wary many-timers.
Children play their newfound game of
catch me if you can
as they slide along the metal chairs.
Grandpas and Grandmas,
thumbs knarred like aged alder trees,
backs hunched over their knees,
wait for a visit.
Change in Ziploc bags
resembling Easter egg trinkets
bypass the metal detectors
while another line forms.
My underwire bra sounds the alarm,
mimicking a fire drill,
and I’m patted down as visitors watch –
an audience to the crime of motherhood.
Chairs and tables are one
like the union between couples in better days,
bolted to the floor.
We play cards
to pass the time,
but conversation stales and
the guard approaches –
it’s time to leave
because others are waiting.
Back again through the razor wire,
the sharp clank of the prison door
an exclamation point
until I visit my son again