Swann’s Song

Mrs. Swann never struck the back of my head. No!

She held my hand and put a pencil in it.  She asked

me to write diligently. No comma splices, run-on

sentences, split-infinitives, informal language, and

clichéd phrases.


In time, she taught me to see the

nuances of holy words that illuminate the orange slice

on the horizon, the caramel apple tree, the pieces of gravel

that occupy my shoe, the rain that hits my windowpane

whenever I read.


In time, whenever I read “Persimmons,” “Song for a Dark Girl,”

“She Walks in Beauty,” “Design,” or “What Teachers Make,”

I will weep. 


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