Poem number 265
The Curfew Rings
The pavement is littered with severed heads
It’s mostly teenagers today, there must have been a party.
Typical teenagers, out when they should’ve been in their beds
Safe and sound well before Curfew.
Perhaps they thought that they would be spared
As so many others have not been
But the Curfew Rings have no mercy and cared
Not for the youth of the miscreants.
For the Curfew Rings are but machines
Sent out to do another’s bidding
As is Fredbot 3.0, who now cleans
Up the pavement in the light of the new sun.
Fredbot 3.0 with his suction tubes and grinding plates
Removing the heads from the street
Before Centre opens up the gates
To give the citizens permission to leave for work.
And here lies a Curfew Ring, amongst the heads on the ground,
Pulsing spasmodically – a victim of depleted energy cells
Its saw-teeth still coated with the blood that it found
And then released, from the neck of a miscreant
So graceful in flight, glowing blue and soaring
Through the sky with its fellows,
Alive to the sounds of pulsing hearts and veins, drawing
Ever closer to the miscreants below.
But here in the sun drenched morning, cells depleted
It is nothing. A metal hoop with a serrated inner edge
Lying, helpless, amongst the justice it meted
Out with such machine-like efficiency.
Fredbot 3.0 snags the fallen Curfew Ring and drops it into his charging slot –
By the time he gets back to Central
It will be fully powered up, ready to be shot
Out at midnight, to deal with more miscreants
Ready to fly through the city in search of those who flout the Rightful Law,
To lasso itself around their necks then contract, squeeze,
Sever, as it spins its metal toothed jaw
Through the raw flesh and bone beneath, before moving on.
And tomorrow there will be more heads on the ground
Empty eyed, hair stirring in the morning breeze
And Fredbot 3.0 will come around
Once more, to clean the streets for a new day.
Poem number 265