Showtunes for the Sixth Grade

sweating into the same shirt
same sheets for days on end
twisting in fabric whether standing or sleeping
hoping for a line to become a curl

hesitation to a threat
"don't make me dance"

put on a sequin hat and cock it
to shuffle and tap you'll need a cane
be caned off the stage
once they see how you know the steps

"you must know what it means!"

to sing these numbers, how obvious
these sexless hips, how obvious
red lights on pink lights at the front of the class
and now it's all so patently obvious

all this dancing was nothing more
than a show to be put on
to show how you've been put upon

"spectacle will do you no good."

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