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heaven is an elementary school book fair -- poetry by Ella Bachrach

heaven is an elementary school book fair

selling thin plastic bookmarks we all slip in pockets

inhaling the rubbery smell of erasers


heaven is an elementary school book fair

with a 20 dollar bill from my mom clutched in a sweaty palm

as i browse my options


heaven is an elementary school book fair

at a catholic school that used to be a residential school but i won’t learn that until

i’m long gone


heaven is an elementary school book fair

in which two copies of a book called Pride hide in a corner

not yet touched by students


heaven is an elementary school book fair

and in heaven, i hide the book called Pride between two others and

bring it up to the counter


and i hand it to the librarian with my 20 dollar bill, now damp with a slick sheen of my own fear, and she scans the books and adds up the price and passes me two dollars and forty cents and she looks me in the eyes and she knows and she can’t say anything but i know she sees me, only twelve, already afraid.


heaven is an elementary school book fair

and God is an old french librarian with wire-framed glasses and a harsh voice, and God

sees me as i am



 

Ella Bachrach is an eighteen-year-old incoming McGill student from northern British Columbia. She thinks many things and occasionally tries to put them into words. When she's not writing, she can be found acting, reading, hanging out with her cat, and taking four-hour naps.

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