Thursday, April 8, 2010

Graduation Day

Her long blond hair was easy to spot
among the 400 graduates,
but to make sure she was our girl

we took turns looking through the binoculars,
we saw her tassels marking her as summa cum laude.
She was busy talking to friends

only slightly conscious that we
were among the sea of faces.
She wanted her family and friends to gather
to acknowledge her accomplishments.

Today she demanded to be the center of attention
For so long she sat on the outside of other circles
while families gathered to celebrate their children.

She was included as the kid down the street
whose mother was chronically intoxicated
who didn’t know how she spent her time.
She told of a time she and a group climbed a fence

then ran across the rooftops
jumping between school buildings
long after dark. She was headed for trouble,

everyone expected it, but when her mother kicked her out
she had a second chance and with it her life changed.
This day was not predicted from her childhood.

She wanted her family to gather, the ones she chose
after her mother admitted she couldn’t take care of her,
and by letting her go her mother gave her
the opportunity to pursue a different destiny.

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