Spring ’85

I can sniff out doom
early
often
easily
but sometimes
I can sniff it out
when it’s
not there.

I think it dates
back to the sixth grade
and Mrs. Brody
-Mrs. Brody
with her
hemorrhoidal
voice
calling to me
as I stood at
the blackboard
MAKE IT AS BIG AS
THE BROOKLYN BRIDGE!

and I tried it.

and the class laughed wildly
at the ridiculously
huge numbers
and I felt myself
burning inside and hating
the lot of them,
but at the same time,
wanting to join them.

I tried to laugh,
but it came out as
a hybrid cough/bark
that reverberated
through the room.

a horrible and malignant
silence ensued. Stares.
and then Mrs. Brody
shouting
GET OUT OF HERE!
in her
great depression
penance
cadence.

I left the room
and time itself
stalled on me.

After many minutes,
she came out and
stood before me,
her beastly arms folded.

HAVE YOU QUITE RECOVERED?
she asked.

I didn’t have
the jam to tell her
that I
hadn’t
and
wouldn’t
and
didn’t care to.

It was 1985
and it wasn’t me
that needed
recovering.

 

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