In due course, we’d have caught you anyway.

This time, you can’t snap another tear-stained selfie, can’t post it to Twitter bearing the hashtag

Threatened with another trip to her Majesty’s prison—a six-month course:
The Consequences of Violating One’s Police Information Notice.

Do you scream the f-word?
The investigation room is no place for you to Facebook-smear it followed by the c-word accented by your ex’s name.

What have you learned? asks the constable.

In this Big Brother Burlesque not even an assumed female alias protected you.

You did it out of love, you say, remembering how Warpaint’s “Love is to Die” fueled
slander-laden messages forwarded to her new employer.

What kind of love? It must have been a sick sort, offers the constable.

Do you remain silent?
Remember: silence can and will be interpreted.

It should be.
She had asked you to leave her alone.
Asked you to not contact her.
Told you not to email.
And then she ceased texting, calling, emailing.

You were the one who literally pushed buttons.

A pause. Light. Dim. You raise your head.

Do you admit the offense?

You’ve built your record, established it on incidences meant to cause distress, induce fear. Already, the transcripts, emails, screenshots bear their teeth against you.

Well? demands the constable.

A pause. Light. Dim. The steel chair. The table.

You hang your head, and you mutter, “For fuck’s sake. This isn’t like how it is in the movies.”

Nicole Yurcaba is an Instructor of English at Bridgewater College. Her poetry and essays appear in The Atlanta Review, The Lindenwood Review, West Trade Review, Chariton Review, Literature Today, and many other online and print journals. She is the author of Hollow Bottles, a chapbook reflection on human futility, music, and nature.

Author Statement:

“Interview Under Caution.” It was inspired by the two years I spent as a cyberstalking victim, and basically, depicts how I imagined the police station scenarios went each time my ex was arrested and charged.

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