VII.

In seventh grade, the rules for speech contest changed to allow students to write their own speeches. I put together a ‘speech’ out of my poetry. And I performed it in front of the junior high. ‘Performed’ is excessive. I recited it. One of my poems was very emo. “When I’m gone don’t mourn me / Do not say you cared / Do not come to say goodbye / Or remember times we’ve shared / Don’t lay a flower on my casket / Don’t sob and cry and weep / You should have loved me long before / I fell into Death’s sleep.” All these years later and I remember every word.