Got searched, lost a lighter

A man speaking his second
language said, “Gate B? Gate C?
There is another checkpoint,
with no waiting, presently.”
We shuffled ‘cross the term’nal,
winners to anoint.
Whoa, where did this come from?
A spiffy little joint.
But I held back on trust,
feared a finger at me point.
The line—it’s just not moving,
riders with too much shit.
“Go ahead,” says the guy afore me,
“my shoes are a tight, tight fit.”
“It’s alright,” I say as I squeeze by
I tend to wear sneakers
every time I fly.

I hand my flimsy boarding pass
to a woman snapping gum.
The man at the detector
waves at me, says, “OK, come.”

No beeps, no wands, no patdowns
(I keep things pretty clean)
but the x-ray argues otherwise:
there’s something on the screen.

The fed gal grabs my bag,
asks me if it’s mine.
She says, “Can I look through it?”
And I say, “Take your time.”

She angles through its contents,
touching this and that,
how many diff’rent pockets,
little holes for dirty rats.

She finds the cut-rate canvas,
she finds the British pound.
Forget the hydrocodone,
forget the brownie crumbs,
this man has got a lighter,
and he’s gonna come with us.

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