John Sinclair On Parent Teacher Day
The hair was kudzu cowed some, half
tamed dark rogue storm cloud beetled
above a wooly Bolshevik glower, eyes
folded fortune cookies concealed behind thick
lenses corralled in thin metal frames, hands
jammed deep into the pockets of his gulag great
coat concealing what?
the manifesto du jour,
a lulled bear driven out of hibernation, higher
brain warming on a back burner or
so I imagined, a student teacher with nothing
better to do, the morning blocked out in
neat fifteen minute intervals, four small
chairs, sturdy oak table, grade book open, ready.
The teacher checked his watch from time
to time, two monks pledged to an uneasy silence
until he lumbered in, our sole customer that morning,
nodding at news of his daughter, a dewy eight
or nine, nervous, tall for her age. A strict observer
I nodded along in smug solidarity, alone
in my recognition of moribund underground
royalty, self-appointed Peter denying Christ,
beholden to the man for my grade.