The principal will tell you he’s prone to violent, volatile outbursts.
See that hole in the science lab wall? That’s Logan.
Before I ever laid eyes on him,
I was made well aware of the many ways he’s broken school rules and property. It’s a long list.
But the boy is more bruise than fist.
Sure, Logan will arrive late, sour beer on breath,
eyes red as an x on a page marking him incorrect.
He won’t say sorry. A split-lipped snarl
and cut knuckles confirm he chose fighting last night as his extracurricular.
Of course he did.
When a 15 year old kid stays up to stand guard against his stepfather outside his little sister’s room, can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t leave, and has to choose to let something go between
of course the answer is d) all of the above
A standardized test will tell you he can’t comprehend Shakespeare, is reading at a fifth grade level;
he struggles to grasp grammar
and never capitalizes i, which is the most heart-rending.
The boy should have been more story than ending.
Buzzed and bloodied in yesterday’s sweatpants, he was just searching for someone who could see past the page torn from a textbook to the misspelled metaphors in the margins,
a poem in spiky scrawl of a child cupping a tiny sparrow in shaky hands.
Jaimee Boake (she/her) is a high school English Language Arts, Creative Writing, and Leadership Teacher in Sherwood Park, Alberta (Treaty 6 Territory). She loves reading, writing, spending time with her dogs, and is happiest, always, in the mountains. A recipient of the Martin Godfrey Award for Young Writers, more of her work can be found in various literary magazines and anthologies or on Instagram @jaimeeannethology
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