Gym Hallway IV

When does your bus leave, Mr. Jackson?

Sir?

Alice huffs and joins
me behind the door.

What time does the bus take you home?

I leave at 3:30, sir, but…

But?

Marshall looks hard at Marcus.

I don’t take the bus.

Oh? Does your mother drive
out to pick you up?

No, sir. I walk home.

Alice kicks my shoe.
I haven’t seen her make that expression
since that time in ninth grade
when we shared a joint in the woods.

You don’t want to see what happens?

She sighs.
You know what happens.
They know what happens.

Are you hungry?

Not really.

Me, neither. Come on.
My treat.

Corcoran’s waving
his Teacher’s Edition around
like a huge, blunt baton.

I can’t meet Jio’s eye
as I turn away.

I think it’s his gift to me,
a small grace.

To meet in the eyes
is to start trouble.
And now there’s blood
on my shoe.

Added: January 29, 2013 | Last changed: May 12, 2016