Fresh Air

Out we go

from the stoic, red brick school

it’s 1920 doors creaking on

brass hinges

now yawning open

housing scholars

for almost a hundred years

We breathe high school

now freed for thirty minutes

more like 27.3 after the packed stairs

We head down Avenue Y

past the house

with the plastic deer

and green carpet for grass

Zavier saunters

touches his hair, those top curls

he’s stylin’ in those black and white Jordans

I slam into Antonio

captain of the soccer team

we are going to Aurelio’s store

serving tacos and white frosted donuts

to kids on the way back to class

or crowding into

a slightly rusted 1993 Ford Escort

for skipping out

on a regular afternoon

Today we are steadfast

not wayward athletes

and we go back

past the plastic deer

and flowers

past trays of steaming tacos

past Vanessa who brushes

the sunlight from her hair

and Zavier’s tears from her memory

it’s high school, after all…

I dream of days

when I can pick mangos

and polish stars

but it’s not today

we go back toward

the red brick building

a battle tower with commandments

carved on the pediment

Tablet of truth, it may be

but we follow the commandments

of youth

subduing the urges of

vibrance and hustle

back to class we go

back to class….



19 thoughts on “Fresh Air

  1. I like how this ends where it begins, at the school doors. On the way out, on the way back in. Imagine, a school still around 100 years later… our buildings are new, and yet there is always a levy to replace something. This cracked me up: “now freed for thirty minutes / more like 27.3 after the packed stairs”–the precision of that 27.3! Vivid descriptions of the kids and the neighborhood, there’s always one house with a plastic deer and fake grass. My favorite lines were these: “I dream of days / when I can pick mangos / and polish stars / but it’s not today.” The concrete astride the ethereal. Well executed, Lana. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you, Joan. High school is always an interesting time period in people’s lives. So much going on. I see kids every week, and I always imagine what they’ve been up to. Happy Friday, Joan πŸ˜€

  2. Pingback: Fresh Air | Acts 2:17 In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.

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