Poem: These Boots
For many police officers, it is a daily struggle not to bring the things they deal with at work into their home life
Calling all police poets! PoliceOne's poetry column highlights some of the inspirational, moving and funny poems authored by our readers.
"These Boots" was inspired by a photo of the boots of an officer husband and wife team who always tell each other to leave their boots and what they’ve walked through that day at the front door.
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We put on these boots and we lace them up tight,
We walk out of our homes and kiss our children goodnight.
We know very well that this could be the last time,
We are prepared to die for your family and leave ours behind.
We will try to bring back the baby, who takes his last breath,
Break it to his mother that the blanket she put him to bed with suffocated him to death.
We watch her fall to her knees as she cries out to God,
“Please take me instead, my baby doesn’t deserve to die!”
We will rush to the aid of the man who’s lost all hope in life,
We will yell at our partner to grab their pocket knife.
We catch the man just in time as he tries to jump to his death,
We cut the rope from around his neck and tell him there is hope left.
Then we’re on our way to an all too common call,
An overdose again, there’s no pulse at all.
The needle, still in his arm, he’s dead at the wheel,
He couldn’t kick the drugs, he didn’t want to feel.
He went too far now and entered the black hole,
The medics arrive and the Narcan gods bring back his soul.
In between the calls, we conduct a traffic stop,
The driver isn’t very happy to see another cop.
We ask to see his hands, but something just isn’t right,
He pulls out a gun, he’s not going back to jail without a fight.
We try to comfort the child who watched his mom and dad get shot, but how?
He looks us in our eyes and says, “Did you know my Mommy and Daddy are dead now?”
We have no comforting words to offer, some things just aren’t fair,
But we do our best to console him and his baby brother while they’re in our care.
All of this in one day, with other calls in between,
With no time to process all the things that we’ve seen.
We will keep moving forward, we won’t miss a beat,
We will go home at night and see these scenes in our dreams.
But we will focus on our family and making memories,
We know all too well how fleeting life can be.
We will serve and protect until we can’t anymore,
And we will do our very best to leave our boots and all they’ve walked through at our front door.