She separated me
as my classmates watched me leave,
I came to the new school
a public school.
She asked me to walk in the sunlight.
it was clean and clear.
the playground had no children
her saying, "keep still."
She touched my hair with thin plastic gloves.
She touched my ear
and looked into my eyes.
I was silent.
I did not know what she looked for.
"Lice. Lice," she said.
A small child frozen into the red granite steps.
I watched as she tried to crush my spirit.
"I can't find any . . . " she muttered.
She smelled the scented strands within her fingers.
The huge hands enveloped my black unbraided hair.
The pale ribbons on the floor, watched in horror.
Her face held madness there in the sunlight.
I remember my peace.
as she stripped off the gloves
and welcomed me.
Last update: 14 January 1999
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