Like Liz at Liz in Ink, who by the way is hosting the Poetry Friday Roundup today, I’m hoping to post more of my poems on Poetry Fridays. Mine will be mostly poems I do for various online poetry stretches, so they aren’t actually finished poems, but I’m counting them anyway.
This week, the prompt at The Miss Rumphius Effect was to write a poem about winning or losing. An old drama/trauma from 3rd grade popped immediately into my head! You know, one of those events that you know rationally matters less than a fleabite. But you still hold it somewhere as one of THE events of your childhood. Scary what my brain holds onto.
R You Sure?
I missed the weekly spelling test—
I was shelving books in the library.
Miss Gracey told my friend Susan
to read me the 30 words.
The student with the highest grade
would go to the school spelling bee.
Only Susan had made a perfect score.
If I did, too, we would have a spell-off.
My chest shook.
Susan smiled her wide smile and began reading.
“I have known you since kindergarten.”
“Usually, we get the same grades.”
“They hid behind the couch and yelled, ‘Soo-prise!’”
I debated wildly for 30 seconds.
Susan smiled widely.
No R. No 30/30.
No spelling bee.
More than 30 years later,
Doubts still suRface.
Do I have a suRplus of suspicion?
Was I absuRd to think she lied?
She assuRed everyone it was a mistake.
Miss Gracey believed her.
Miss Gracey always believed the best about us.
But I am not suRe.
–Laura Purdie Salas, all rights reserved
If you’re interested, I posted a list of online poetry prompts the other day. Try some out. You’re sure to find a few that fit your schedule and pull some interesting words out of you.