At Fifteen

I was so much braver, then,
or perhaps, just stupid

and love was a poster
of this week’s heartthrob,
the lead singer of a band
or the guy who sat in the back
of first period algebra class.

I was the girl too shy to speak
that wrote the best notes
on pink lined paper
in multicolored ink
best known for Ms. Conrad’s class
when she read my note
that expressed my love for Clay;
a guy I had known since second grade
who didn’t know I was alive
until that confession was read
in front of the entire 8th grade English class,

but, I did get credit for perfect punctuation,
but, too many adjectives.

Not much has changed.

I hated school, especially Mondays
after the bad weekends
when things turned ugly
and I felt even more isolated
than usual.
I remember wondering
if anyone else worried about their Mom
and what may be happening at home
when the bell rang for second period.

Even when Mom took us and left,
I still felt out of place,
like something wasn’t quite right
in my head.
It was a mystery for decades,
why in the world I was so strange,
never belonged,
always a little off.

It took me years to discover,

I am not really THAT crazy,
I am just a poet.

~

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