Living as a poet is hard.
See, the teacher is always changing,
not just when September comes,
but every moment the temperature drops,
or the rain does the same.
That moment you started to sweat?
Or turn on the bathroom tap?
Or revel in a short shower?
Or cry? Those things,
they make the coloring time begin,
squeeze you back into a school desk,
hand you a crayon,
tell you to outline your life.
So you do it,
on a thin sheet of math paper.
You were taught to listen,
lead the crayon along in lines,
counting as you do:
one one hundred,
two one hundred.
Don’t get it wet, now.
It’ll smudge.
See how long
you can hold your breath.

Katherine Gotthardt

Katherine Gotthardt, M.Ed., writing concentration, has been writing, editing and teaching for more than twenty years. For the past ten years, she has earned a living through content development and marketing. Besides being published in dozens of journals, Katherine has authored six books: Poems from the Battlefield, Furbily-Furld Takes on the World, Approaching Felonias Park, Weaker Than Water, Bury Me Under a Lilac and Late April. She has been nominated twice for Poet Laureate of Prince William County, VA, received InsideNova's 2019 Best of Prince William award in the author category and is Editor in Chief of Prince William Living magazine. Katherine serves as president of Write by the Rails, the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club.

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