It’s early morning, my half awake middle aged mind returns to grade nine, an opaque blur: no faces, no objects, just a sense of door, teacher, the front of the classroom being next to the door, windows at the back…I hand the teacher my scribbled line “if they don’t care why should I?”…all is in shadows except her response: “of course you care.”
The debate led by “M” was in the same classroom…she said “he” had a superiority complex…I thought perhaps the boy discussed felt inferior…my head mulled over this question many times…decades later I ponder it once again…not remembering the “he” we were debating, only that he was troubled, troubling, or both. Perhaps feeling superior or inferior are similar modes…both mistakes about self, both experiences of precipice. And then the final fragment of memory: in the hallway, just outside the classroom door, the tall shadow of the girl who would be the leader in this new school.
lost in an ocean
just learning how to swim