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THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 93

Folded Paper

In the gym,
I found a folded sheet of paper
wedged between two sections of the bleachers.
I plucked it out
and unfolded it.
The sheet crackled, like it was stretching its fibers.
Four lines seared across the sheet,
inked in red like rage:
I DO NOT HATE CARRIE LAWSON
I DO NOT HATE CARRIE LAWSON
I DO NOT HATE CARRIE LAWSON
I DO NOT HATE CARRIE LAWSON

The writer must have tried to convince himself
(or herself),
but failed.
There was hatred in the way the pen
ripped right through the paper
as it was forced to demonstrate
the writer’s frustration.

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THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 92

Gaming 101

Our new computer engineering teacher
did not actually teach.
When we walked into class,
we each set up a computer
(there was a mad rush for
keyboards with all the keys,
mice with the balls still intact,
and computers that wouldn’t spark
when plugged in)
and played games.
Nick installed Quake,
Unreal Tournament, Doom,
and Wolfenstein 3D
on every machine.
(I guess they were a good outlet
for his destructive tendencies.)
Sometimes our teacher played with us.
When the principal walked in,
we pretended to be working.
We started unplugging cables
and poking hard drives with screwdrivers,
and we minimized every single game.

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THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 91

Serenity

I breathed a sigh of relief
and admitted it.
“I am glad it’s over.
So glad.”
I knew I wouldn’t be able to
get behind the wheel of a car
without thinking of him.
He drove well.
There was a kind of safety
in the way he put his hands on the wheel,
the cautious way he went over speed bumps.
I never managed to slow down enough
before them.
My hands always slid away from the “ten-and-two.”
But when I watched him drive,
serenity washed over me.
He looked calm,
a slight smile curving his face
like a secret.

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