Circa 1976: One Fairly Warm Afternoon, In September Before The Equinox

Unlike ours, your school was private,

easily afforded by your wealthy parents,

with numerous rules meant to exclude

the feared, and less affluent, hoi polloi,

whose casual existences secretly frightened

those brass trumpets that thoroughly despised

the marches of different drummers, in their lives.

Soft cascades of hair below your collar raised eyebrows.

Your shirt, of course, was fully compliant with code;

but untucked, unbuttoned at the collar and also

frontally, showing your nicely tanned torso.

The missing tie was a flaunted provocation.  Your

green bell-bottoms were defiantly uncompliant, as

were your almost feminine feet, which reveal

two grass-stained, and sidewalk-grimed, soles.

The flex and curl of your small toes against

the lower horizontal frame of the carrel chair

may have caused prune prudish others to wander where

you had stowed your unlaced shoes and striped socks

(only solid grays were permitted that week)

as you continued to read and enjoy

(your toes never failed to provide proof of pleasure)

a collectiom of delicately erotic poems,

Cavafy's, about a still forbidden love---
so beautiful, so beautifully described,

that more than your mind instinctively responded.






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