Anita Mechler: School Supplies

[The writers here at Drinkers with Writing Problems love our writing prompts. This poem was created from the prompt “Back to School” that we explored at our most recent writing meeting. Follow us for the next two weeks for more interpretations on this theme.]

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The last expanse of summer



Rows and rows


Just for me,

Begging to fulfill their utility.


Their smell fresh as fall

Of crisp air,

Sweaters pulled from the backs of drawers

Layers of expectations


A pliant pink eraser

Pureness in form

Untouched by the mistakes

It was made to obliterate.


White glue bottles with orange tops,

Before crust of use

Or gouge of scissors.


Scent of notebook paper

Unmarked by thoughts, dates, lists, completed assignments.


A thrilling new lunchbox

All the promise of sustenance

None of the old sandwich smells, rotting bananas, or artificial pudding.


Even the itchiness of hand-me-down uniforms

Comforts me,

Nostalgia forgetting the awkward unflattering tailoring, yellowed collars, and pit stains.

The sagging gym clothes

With decaying elastic.


There’s nothing like the unsharpened pencil

Or the unopened box of markers

To set my soul at ease.

I’ve traded it for unused sticky notes

Crisp manila folders

New pens

Shiny paper clips

Rubber band balls.

My childhood loves

Follow me into the adult world of work.

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