First Day of Classes

back in the classroom after many years

arguably the oldest person in the room

although not the only student over 22, thankfully

i am pretty certain that the young man in the corner

is autistic or has asperger’s syndrome

i spent many years of life as a therapist

my “spidey sense” still attuned to the anxiety disorders,

angst and mood disorders swirling around this room

i am the only one who cites my depression

when we discuss what impacts our writing

there is an odd mix of science majors and

english and creative writing types in the room

a jumble of social awkwardness and collegiate cool

i am intrigued with the older male covered in

tatts who has already brought  up “truth”

several times

mentions a colorful past including biker gangs

and is just grateful to be here

a potential ally perhaps

along with the 30-something woman next to me

who is interested in feminist trauma writing

this is the first creative writing class

that I have ever taken

i was a women’s studies and politics double major

in college before women’s studies became gender studies

back when dinosaurs roamed the earth

i am full of excitement, curiosity tonight

and equal parts insecurity, dread

do I belong here?

is my  voice worthy?

my writing compelling enough?

my feedback valuable enough

to contribute in this rarefied atmosphere?

sebastion, the professor, young enough to be my son

has already reassured us that we will not need

to be slaves to convention here

that there will be room for my stream of consciousness

prose that has little respect for punctuation

capitalization or rhyming

I look around at my youthful classmates

and realize somewhat ironically

that I have already lived more different lifetimes

than the amount of writing classes

most of them have under their belts

and that I have run away from more places

than they have likely ever been

should be an interesting semester. . .


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