In School Suspension

She was rhythm with ringlets

daring girl

a dynamo

inside denim leggins

mischievous and head-on bold

eyes lined in black noir

hot sauce on a stormy night.

“What’s that sub’s name, Miss Brussel Sprouts?”

No, Miss Tight Pants

Instead I composed a direct, curt smile.

Drifting from side to side in

a room of square desks in rows

defined by a square system

shedding pedagogy like a pit viper

snaking through unsettled territory

“Know what he’s got in here? This is where he keeps the bodies…”

She fingers the lock on a gray metal cabinet, the corners of her mouth lifting,

“No, seriously Bro, he puts the bodies in here….”

She is on the No Fly List

Forty-five minutes, penned up in class

That’s a lot

Her mind fizzes

the sunlight skirts through the windows

bathing her in exuberance

“How many years you been a sub?”

Enough to learn to like brussel sprouts

and soccer…

I meet her the next day down the hall

wild curls flyin’

eyes twinkling

“I got ISS again,” she calls to me

I shake my head

They simply aren’t equipped

to handle her.

She shuffles to the back.




18 thoughts on “In School Suspension

  1. This tears at my heart. So many children are labeled inappropriately. They just need some caring attention and guidance. Great message!

    • This is true, Dee. Sadly many children do fall through the cracks and it’s such a waste. Not everyone can fit into the system, it would be good if they could map out alternative routes for some kids. Thanks for reading and commenting!

  2. You really show the sweet and sour in this kid, Lana, one who’s been in ISS so many times she knows she’s got a sub. I loved the interaction between Miss Brussel Sprouts and Miss Tight Pants, the pit viper winding around the square classroom, The No-Fly List. A great word picture, well done. 🙂

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