Circa 1976: Geometry, Sixth Period, Autumn Of Senior Year

Even the girls in the high school though he was beautiful---
athletic, agile, and very shrewdon the field of play;
hence his withdraw from all team sports at the
commencement of senior year was a shock
that still generated aftershocks, and general condemnation
among the coaching staff and school administration.
Sixth period Geometry, he chose to sit beside you---
even though, being an AP course, seats were not assigned.
And because you were not one of the popular people---
in fact, being the most unpopular person in high school---
no one wanted that particular desk anyhow.
Except him: he did, and let everyone else know it was his own.
Customarily, he always slipped his deck shoes off
those defiantly rainbow striped socks he liked to wear
(for each day of the week, a different pair;
and never the athletic department's mandated whites).
You learned to recognize their subtle fragrance (that pleasure
not to be shared with anyone there at all),
and often inhaled deeply, quietly, during the lectures.
One day, well into the term; after flexing his feet
provocatively with an aim to draw your attention;
he leaned over, and whispered to you, "I really dislike
"Euclid's parallel postulate, that demands of two
"straight lines that they can never meet, but go on,
"into forever, without ever touching at all.
"I would much rather prefer them to intersect:
"to reach the point of total intersection,
"which they might think of," he said with a coy smile,
"as intersexion, or the same gendersexion, or even---
"don't tell anyone---Homosexion," and he chuckled wryly.
That was the last class of the day, and afterward
he walked you home; and this particular October
being unusually warm and dry for that region,
he carried his shoes, with his socks stuffed into them,
and the wide bell-bottoms of his otherwise slender jeans
almost, but not quite, concealed his eagerly bare feet.
A little later, in your home's backyard,
he unbuttoned his button-down shirt and knelt down,
and placed his class ring on your finger,
and asked you, using the terms common to the seventies,
if you would like to be lovers, and like to go steady with him.

 

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