Susan Vaughan The 2River View, 5.3 (Spring 2001)

The Armored Car Company Supervisor

He can't sleep; his boss won't get the message
that every driver needs a specially fitted
bulletproof vest and can't just borrow Henry's
while he's in the hospital. His place

is such a living monument to chaos
his wife gave up and got her own apartment
across the parking lot. They pass and wave,
driving each other's car. When he gets home
on graylit Sunday mornings after driving
all night to Reno, Stockton or Eureka
(to fix an ATM that lost its alarm code
or ate up customer cards), he shoves his laundry,
gun belt, unopened mail off the sofa
and turns on his TV. He loves cartoons.
His favorite is The Tick, that superhero
who's turned the superhero thing on its head.

He snickers as the media representatives,
laboring under a vast misapprehension
due to scoundrels' trickery, thrust their microphones
into The Tick's face, anxiously inquiring,
Sir, is it true you're going to blow up the earth?

and starts to snore at last, his righteous hero
all indignant, telling the misled planet,
Gadzooks no! That's where I keep my stuff!
and floats on wings of angels for a moment
off to that sane and well-protected world.

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2River All is well.