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They are scattered

Maybe all but gone now,

But I wish for a hint

Of them

In seeing them shine, then

A beautiful kind of embarrassment

for you, and for me.


That first day I was trembling hard

Away from mommy, the first time, pulled

From her smile and mommy’s tender-warm love

to the looming pale-green dome

of bus number 46 in ’76,


Toward the cold, stern and tired eyes of Mrs. Katsomethingorother.

I spell it wrong now, and would get Mr. Yuckystock’s paddle.

Him, too, I misspell, but I don’t misspell you, Renee.

But she put me with the tall and pretty blonde, more like a mantis than a unicorn,

but so pretty was she,

with long and lovely legs, for a child.


She knew I would not cry or tell,

So, she kicked me hard for my sins

I had yet to commit.


Black and blue shins

All up and all down.

Her eyes flashed with a hatred,

I know not why,


But I summed up the courage and stood up

No longer peeing in my pants

Too afraid to ask

I said, with big eyes and trembling voice,

“May I sit next to Renee?”


With long red hair and a timid, shy face,

Glaring down at her coloring book,

I and she seldom said a word

For 9 months

we sat together.


You were the first girl … I asked.

You, were beautiful Renee,


Kind and feminine and lived at the

End of a road

in ‘76.


Whenever I see a little girl

With red hair and freckles,

I think of you.


She is iridescent, like you,

And, I, the hopeful child again,

Just wanting to have a true friend.

Just a moment,

a tiny part of my childhood back,

one lost through poverty and neglect

even if no bigger than a fading freckle of our childhood’s past.