The Sweater Incident

November 30, 2007
By Rachel McGuinness, Wyoming, MI

It was a green sweater,
The West Catholic logo embroidered in The corner,
An unusually cold winter
With wind whipping through the hallways
Leaving a thin coating of imaginary snow in my battered locker.
Half filled Meijer water bottle lay Frozen solid,
Tiny ice crystals refracting
Broken patterns of rainbow colors
In the cafeteria heat
Radiated from the glowing cross
Guarding the entry.
Then she appeared--
The one girl without a sweater--
Her hazel eyes a magnet searching for Its other pole,
Spotted Ethan.
Swinging hips,
Batting eyelashes
Announced her arrival.
She perched on the edge of the orange Cafeteria stool
Staring at his sweater,
Trying to embrace its warmth.
After a few deep breaths
And a shiver for effect
She uttered the five most terrifying words a boy could hear
In a frigid lunchroom,

"Can I borrow your sweater?"
And everything went still-
The growling of the wind,
Clinking forks and spoons,
Everyone, mouths full of partially Chewed Oreos and bits of sandwiches,
Waited for his reply.
Regally wiping his mouth
with a spaghetti-stained napkin,
Ethan proclaimed,
"I'm kind of using it right now."
She shot us a death glare
As she left her seat
To shiver for the rest of the day
In the shadow of his green sweater.

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