I remember...

…flying smugly through grammar worksheets,
multiplication tables, handwriting practice.
stickers and “Good Job!”s.
school was easy, then.
no homework on weekends.

…and single file lines down reverberating halls.
toes on the silver furrow,
whispers bubbling like a teapot—“Hush!”
whispers again—“Shhhhh.”
spittle everywhere.

…or darting out of class at the recess bell.
scrambling to the swings:
rusty, squealing swings
that pinched fingers
and left purple bruises.

…but the sandbox trumped all.
desiccated, scalding grains
over a dense, moist layer.
building towering castles.
sand caked on arms and legs, in shoes and hair.

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