evening poem, October 5, 2016



I never had Mr. Harvey for class

But everyone knew him

You could see him in the school assemblies

Standing beside the fire escape door

Always a coat and tie

He would smile, barely

When the cheering reached fever pitch.


I found out much later

That the stories about him were true

He had served on a PT boat

In the Pacific in 1944

Making deliveries to the big warships

Sailing through enemy fire.


He was short and had no reputation

For being a great teacher

Or great at anything

But the school changed when he died

As much as if the place had been stripped

Of its roof.




Copyright 2016

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