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Monday, May 25, 2020


by Scot Ehrhardt

To my seniors in Literature and Composition class, Spring 2020

You aren’t alone in missing milestones.
I had a kickass poetry unit planned for April
that might have changed the way you existed
in the world--at least, the world before.

I’m not sure what you did learn. Maybe
that rites-of-passage bend and blear,
walking an evening labyrinth in
a poorly-made gown. Maybe
that Patience is too timid a virtue,
that you should have held prom early—
on the driveway of your first love,
something acoustic on Bluetooth—
and danced in the bursting light of forsythia.
You could have touched someone longer,
when people touched.

Bluetooth is the opposite of poetry.
You would have learned that in April.

I’m afraid to open the door again,
to a preserved mid-March classroom—
what papers I left, the withered
potted plants, the perfunctory chalk
message that was supposed to be read
by you, who have long since moved on
and maybe understood something new
this April, though it won’t be poetry,
not like it would have been from me.

Scot Ehrhardt writes and teaches in Baltimore, MD. His first collection of poetry One of Us Is Real was published in 2016. He has appeared in Little Patuxent Review, Tidal Basin Review, Switchgrass Review, and Lines + Stars. He supervises two journals for young writers: The Mill and Lexophilia.