School

A teacher’s cupboard,
My thumbs whiten in compression,
Thumbed textbooks,
Must and dust and fusty thoughts,
Forgotten.
Footsteps pause in darkened halls,
Amidst the smell of linoleum cleaners and sneakers.
I hear voices call, plaintive and clear;
Echoing off displays,
Reaching under doorways.
They promise forgiveness,
Offer exoneration and redemption.
Yet I know my sins,
Know myself,
So I bite my tongue and hide.

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