The murder of a mistress excites an editor or two
But this defendant is the first to face his fate
on camera, so lawyers have their say,
then leave it to the judge to read the verdict
on The News. It’s Guilty and before you know,
he’s gone to spend his years reflecting
or resisting all the ends that sentences entail.

A determined innocent he declined to answer
any particle that made the cloud of evidence
that brought him down. And it’s a house of
horror tale no jury could resist.
Each circumstance weighed heavy with the next –
the luring, lonely basement, filled
with suffocated wishes; the kitchen scoured
with bleach in an over spotless house;
the hair caught in a carpet; the freshener
that lingered in the boot; the tape which could
have bound a quartered body, butchered
into meat. And then the search for rocky
tracks that must have caused the damage
to the car as it defiled the empty wilderness
that slinks now round an unmarked grave.
You could not write it for TV.

Poor girl, she’s not found to add her
body’s outrage to the day. Instead
the empty land they think she’s in
yields five more bodies in her stead.
Four buried and one abandoned
on a beach. What their sacrifice was
only can be guessed. Their resurrection
brings no judgement day on anyone.
But she escaped, and love is free
to keep its council in his cell. Out there
concealed in urban post codes five more
killers guard their secret liberty
to see what hidden death may call.

In 2012, a friend told how a colleague of her husband’s was being tried for murder in Edinburgh. It was a crime of passion, with no body, and entirely circumstantial evidence. The verdict was to be televised.

One thought on “Nobodies

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