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The Dreaded E-Word

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Exam week.
Monday, shove in
last-minute tests and
hope to raise the
quarter grade,
before The Curse
of being a freshman,
completely bombs it.

Tuesday, shove in
Review.
Sutdent review,
teacher review,
review packet,
review notes,
review game,
18 weeks, compactly into
55 minutes,
6 times.

Wednesday,
First period Exam.
English.
Only 210 questions.
Fifth period Exam.
Science.
Bohr Models, valence
electrons, chemical
equations, definitions –
I left the room
with regrets.

Thursday,
Second period exam.
250 questions, an essay,
listening comprehension,
and all of it was in
my secondary language.
Sixth period exam.
World Concepts/Themes.
Haven’t taken it,
expecting to ace it,
Locke, Hobbes, Voltaire,
Marx, Smith, Trotsky,
Henry VIII, Louis XIV,
no problem.

Friday,
Third period exam.
Orchestra.
Rehearsal for two
endless hours.
Attitude. Preparedness.
Posture. At least
I won’t be drawing
200 Abysmal circles.
Seventh period exam.
Math.
Either you get it. . .
or you don’t.
And 90% of the time,
I do. Not extremely
worried, but still
a little apprehensive.

Extended advisory,
(what, so we can
ignore the announcements
for 4 additional minutes?)
20 minute break
(bathroom and friends,
locker change and friends,
friends, and please, no more chairs)
Hour-long Study Period
(pointless, pointless, pointless;
I’m writing poems in required silence)
Ten spare minutes
before dismissal
(right, because I SO
want to spend ten
minutes collecting the
books I won’t study from tonight.)

Infinite sticks of refill led,
water bottles and bagged lunches,
Highlighted notes, post-its, paperclips,
Calluses and bandaids,
no free time,
paranoid checking online
(are my exam grades up yet?)
baggy pants and ragged ponytails,
copies of altered schedules,
I cannot
wait
‘til Saturday.




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