I remember a time when of my high school professors had said,
“William, I hate to see students fall down the path of washout slackers,
but your grades just do not match your intellect.”

He was telling me this for fear of me failing,
and after some retort with my house principal,
he saw fit to compare my perfect 800 verbal SAT score
with my lonely D- in his class.

He told me that I would inevitably fail at this rate,
that life and happiness are somehow directly linked to
transcripts and papers.
And that I would be a miserable flop of a man were
I to keep up my indiscretion.

At the time I had been reading Shakespeare’s Macbeth aloud,
having been one of, if not the best public speaker in the class.
I took my feet of my desk and stopped reading,
He leaned in on his pedestal and grinned thinking
he’d bested me, waiting for me to acknowledge defeat.

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