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Subject to Change

by
  A reflection on my students

They are so beautiful, and so very young
they seem almost to glitter with perfection,
these creatures that I briefly move among.
I never get to stay with them for long, but even so, I view them with affection: they are so beautiful, and so very young.
Poised or clumsy, placid or high-strung, they’re expert in the art of introspection, these creatures that I briefly move among— And if their words don’t quite trip off the tongue consistently, with just the right inflection, they remain beautiful.
And very young.
Still, I have to tell myself it’s wrong to think of them as anything but fiction, these creatures that I briefly move among— Because, like me, they’re traveling headlong in that familiar, vertical direction that coarsens beautiful, blackmails young, and turns to phantoms those I move among.

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