Wednesday, July 08, 2020

New Poetry by Frank C Modica


Sneering greasers chase Thomas in the cafeteria,
he runs from laughing jocks down the hallway,
between the doorway and the desks of my French class
his voice rings like a bell but I don’t want to hear his words.

All these years I never acknowledge Thomas,
my tongue tied, the mute observer,
I never apologize, never stand with him--
I remain as silent as the acoustic drop ceilings.
Is it any wonder that  Proud Polacks, Dagos, Micks
get away with slamming Thomas into school lockers,
yelling “fag” as they rip books out of his arms?
There is no place he can hide, no sanctuary.

Fifty years after high school graduation.
he is skin and bones in a vault.
My mea culpas come too late. I stand accused
by the ghost of Thomas McKinley.

- © Frank C Modica 2020

Frank C Modica is a retired public school special education teacher  living in Urbana, Illinois. He taught students with special needs for 34 years.  His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Black Heart Magazine, Adelaide Literary Magazine, Crab Fat Literary Magazine, and The Tishman Review.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thank you for speaking our collective guilt. It is necessary and right. And you are a teller who can summon a moment from time.