The Last Day of School
It's the last day of school and I'm cleaning out my desk and packing up books. The seniors are milling about the classroom, forming and reforming groups as the boredom strikes them. Some are signing yearbooks; others share earphones to listen to music or read tattered copies of Bone they've borrowed from the teacher across the hall. One boy, a quiet but bright boy, the kind who makes an "A" but teachers have a hard time recalling his name, is at the dirty whiteboard writing something with his finger. All the markers and erasers have been returned to the storeroom. He slowly and methodically traces the letters over and over.
Later in the day, I walk by the board and notice that those perfect cursive letters spell out "fuck school." No capitals, no punctuation. I resist the urge to correct it.
the janitor feather dusts
Note: first published in Frogpond 31.3, fall 2008; also appeared in White Lies: Red Moon Anthology 2008)