Almost Tragedy

I

Normal Talking

Quiet discussion waiting for the bell

Homeward Bound

 

II

A bell

Alarm

Quick footsteps now, I can make it, I gotta make it–

 

III

“Eliza, why don’t you come into the office now.”

Retreating, hiding

“What the hell is going on?!”

 

IV

Quiet whispers

Silent texts

Eliza: I don’t know what’s going on, please be patient

 

V

Please hold students for five minutes after the bell

Please hold students indefinitely until further notice

Teachers, please close your blinds

 

VI

Shaking hands, heavy breaths. Lauren to my back.

“Maybe it’s a medical emergency? Or a parental custody thing, y’know?”

“But nobody’s outside, none of the lower schoolers are out there…”

 

VII

“Should I call my mom?”

“No… she’s probably busy, plus…”

Don’t get her caught. Don’t bring attention to her.

 

VII

Mom: The line’s not moving, but there are teachers out by the buses. This is weird.

Mom: Cops are here.

Mom: Stay safe.

 

VIII

Do I text her “I love you?”

Do I say anything to anyone?

Does that sound like I’m saying goodbye?

 

IX

Total fear

Would I die for my sister by covenant? My brother by blood?

Eliza: Mom Henry’s not in the atrium is he? He can’t be down there–

 

X

Ten minutes in total

Eliza: We’re free. 

Eliza: I’m finding Henry, going to my lesson, and then getting the hell out of here

 

Almost Tragedy

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My community
My country
Our world

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