Previously on Spirit Prison Sitcom


And as many of the spirits as were in prison came forth, and stood on the right hand of God; and the remainder were reserved in chains of darkness until the judgment of the great day.

Moses 7:57, The Pearl of Great Price

Spirit Prison Sitcom Season 6

Between the laughs—

Guffaw! Guffaw
when a homophobic man has to walk
across town just to get pornography,
goaded on by subliminal messages…
When Christ gets booked into Bellevue
for pummeling pimps on 8th Avenue…
When words are chalked or penciled,
and solemn ones typed on carbon paper…
When an undercover cop in drag can hear
Oklahoma echoing out of the Palace…
When slavery still isn’t a thing of the past…
When SHC gets TLC thanks to the DOE…
When all hotlines are landlines, answered
for caged perps and ex-parrot owners…

Chortle. Chortle.
Where a doctor calls for amygdalotomy,
the lawyer comes to call.
Where even a judge can crack…
Where a wife doesn’t know her husband…
Where a dentist and a dirty old man
get booked for being hands-on…
Where the census takers can’t count,
so the renters don’t count,
count on vigilantes. Where homeless guys
say disco clubs ruined the neighborhood…
Where the demoted and would-be promoted
fight over the spare desk… Where arguments,
like the coffee, will never be fresh…

Titter at. Titter at
how they shrug off one in the chamber…
How the suits and the uniforms barely mesh…
How nuclear power and big brother assemble
lawfully in the top of a man’s mind…
How the cleaning lady’s wisdom wastes
away, never taken to heart…
How criminals are sometimes just so
impressive and endearing… How even
a wise captain is naive about something…
How conspiracy theorists fear microwave
attacks as fog rolls over the city—
the atmosphere playing itself the blues…

—between the laughs.

hands held out through prison bars

Spirit Prison Sitcom Season 7

Between
Looming
Redirected
Manpower

Let me tell you something, Captain. When the crunch comes, it’s only the people like us, who have learned how to be self-sufficient, who are gonna survive!

Nagging
Exposure
Hooked
Convictions
Inform
Stigma

…one of the very keys to survival is the procurement of undocumented firearms.

The
Shortsighted
Anticipatory
Samaritan
Wars
Libel
Salvation

A drowning man will grab even the point of a sword.

Incarcerated
Value
Nuclear
Unrest

And the captain laments …if society is going, I’d just assume go with it, because I do not relish the thought of starting all over again with people like you.

Draining
Protectionists
Appeal
Laughs


Poet’s Notes:

These two poems draw on imagery and quotes from the classic sitcom Barney Miller. Running from 1975 to 1982, the show follows the misadventures of a squad of New York City detectives.

Aerial image originally by fancycrave1 from Pixabay