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If you ever asked me
how my English class is going,
I would tell you that I enjoy
adhering to the outline of an essay,
to follow the frame of a thesis
or the order of an analytical paragraph.
And I love forcing my mind
to be more creative,
the strict guidelines of writing
being bent to fit the shape I want
while the main principles of grammar still prevail
like never forgetting how to ride a bike.
I would add that I can get lost
reading this book of poems
or writing and rewriting
the revisions of my work.
We all started with "Huck Finn,"
then moved on to "In Cold Blood,"
"The Trouble with Poetry," The Things They Carried."
But I want to graduate to "The Great Gatsby"
and learn how to write for myself
rather than for a grade.
I want to write
pages that will connect me
to the various sides of my personality,
to the different aspects of my education,
the people I can relate to,
the people who can relate to me.
One day I want to write in one sitting
that will begin with me
when the black ink touches the paper
and end with you when it is triumphantly closed
and slowly set down beside a warm cup of coffee.