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The Retired Policeman

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As I sat in my chair, the mirror I began to stare, my skin, weathered and fair, white has become, the color of my hair, as I looked closer I saw an ugly glare, it was my soul I could see, tender and rare. I drank more whiskey for the mirror I couldn't bear, the man I saw I felt no care. I arose from that seat, and I thought about the beat, the radio calls and horrors of bodies under the sheet. The cases I had solved and killers I had to meet. Flashes of police work before me so dark but neat, the flames from my pistol of my shooting and all its heat, I remembered like yesterday...like yesterday's beat. I was a good cop, a detective to be concrete. The memories and flashbacks, they haunt me of my time on the street.


My gun belt hangs and gathers dust; my badge doesn't shine much more as it glistens with rust. The award on my wall of my big drug bust...also remains quiet and faded of dust. I miss the job and I hate it too, I was gambling with my life in a ghetto zoo, the blood in my flesh always ran blue, to the department and God I was dedicated and true. I slept with my pistol like wood and glue, one eye open I couldn't stop the paranoia like a raging flu. A Cop I was, and served with honor and respect, and the memories I see that often reflect, at 2 am at the coroners with another body to dissect.


 I was fit to be tied, this law enforcement ride, cheaters that lied and young children that died, suspects that would hide, and the gun on my side, opened my heart and my eyes so wide... there I was, working Homicide. Cases unsolved drive me insane, like thunderous storms and heavy rain, gave me a stroke and now I carry a cane, a bag of liquor and pills and lots of pain, consume my body and relax my brain. PTSD is ugly you see, PTSD has happened to me, but I wouldn't trade it for killers that never went free. The thugs and crooks I put behind bars, the chases and thrills of stolen cars, or the fights and scars that I got in bars. I was a policeman, I was good and maybe the best, I wore on my chest a bullet proof vest, and every day I was put to the test...slept few hours without much rest, but I gave Justice for those who died...and Lord I was proud to be "Homicide".


About the Author

Detective Patrick Shrum began his law enforcement career as a police explorer.  He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.  He became a military police officer and during his service he provided law enforcement and security for Marine One under both President Bush and Obama.  After his Marine Corps service, he became a Federal Police Officers; and, then a Los Angeles Police Officer; and, joined another Southern California Police Department where he has recently been promoted to Detective.  He is a recipient of the “Presidential Service Certificate Award for Honorable Service in the White House, and the highest civilian police award-The Medal of Valor”

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