The recently acquired documents inspired the following poem.
Beware of MarmWith pleasure I will torpedo the ark.
—Henrik Ibsen, “An Enemy of the People”
The ploy was not ingenious, but rather sadly typical of the day,convenient and diversionary—no counter argument necessary,
just demonize the messenger and ignore what he had to say.
And so on the basis of a single event of cops called and
suddenly confronting me in the public library that day in June,
when I was working in a room alone and quietly,
the Marm in Chief,* who’d invited them, would later write
to the trustees who’d hired her:
Because of his behavior when the police were here they almostarrested him.
So now I had an almost-arrested police record, and almost appeared
in the almost-arrested blotter of the local newspaper.
He can go from calm to extremely agitated in a matter of seconds,
she’d written clinically, though without PhD.
Yet who in their right mind not on meds would not have raised
his voice viscerally
at such a grotesque affront to freedom of speech and expression?
So this is the correct decision for the safety of the staff and public,”
she decided as judge, jury, and henchbitch.
And out I walked that miserable day in June, three cops by my side,
imminent danger to staff and public safety, though no gun
and bullets in hand, no jihadist bomb belt round the gut,
not even hatred in my eyes, just a pen, paper, and laptop computer.
If he does come into the library, the police have advised us not to
interact with him but simply call them and they will come and arrest him,
she noted, proud of her successful orchestration.
But to the Marm in Chief’s likely dismay, I’ve yet to set foot in her library
since that notorious decree to permanently trespass me,
and so no life sentence in some harsh penitentiary up till now for me!
*The Marm in Chief is Director Lucy Loomis, Sturgis Library, Barnstable, MA. Thanks to Citizen Russell Streur’s perseverance and the resultant positive decision made by the Secretary of Records for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, nine months after that dismal day in June, I was able to view the document containing the Marm in Chief’s above statement.