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School Supplies by Lauren Lansford

I gave them patience,

permission


beveled rose erasers:

slippers for our ballet

of mistakes.


Hallway high-fives,

umbrellas in the rain,


and advice I could not keep.

I gave them myself.


I gave them time, bluffed energy:

my proof of love.


I held their mothers

at graduation, and


at their funeral,

I gave them flowers.


Lauren Lansford is a queer woman and public school educator whose writing is largely informed by those experiences. She has previously been published in Spyglass and Sybil Journal.

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