Valedictorian’s shouldn’t stutter

Valedictorian’s shouldn’t shudder,

I hear them scoff in the hallway,

is it fear behind their lips?

a shaking equivalent to mine, warping

their language, thoughts, words;

anticipation of what their peers

from other schools, mine from the same

will mix with chuckles and spit

on our faces, fine layer of disgust

coating our forever image

after ten minutes of terror

abate, into graveyard silence

the most calm they have ever been.

Maybe I should just stay

in the classroom

SS

d

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