Chris Peasley. I live in Northern California with my husband, two children, two dogs, two cats, two fish and many wild birds and butterflies. I work with teenagers and remember my stint on those shores. I have worked as a journalist for several small newspapers and have been writing most of my adult life. I am disabled, not that you might notice.

School Prep

Fearful of intimacy the army
stands rigid upright
orders from commander gel.
He likes the precision of his
spikes against the rebellion
of a blood-red ear cuff.
Checking face foche in the
cleansing bathroom mirror, he attacks
rogue blackheads and sinister pores
His eyes move to the regulation
uniform of his company
tailored camp shirt unbuttoned
over a violent orange tee-shirt no pocket
Pants a size smaller than proscribed
are evidence of the truce
with the maternal adversary
The belt concession to adolescent
hips and gravity's inevitable power
Finalizing the arsenal he slips
on his size 14 combat NIKEs, and spins
himself around for general inspection.
A nod affirms the camouflage is complete.
Armed for the day with bulging backpack,
he heads out into a dangerous
world of judgement, gossip and changing alliances,
Ready to do battle.

Copyright 2001 by Chris Peasley