Schoolyard Memories

Schoolyard Memories

S.J. Matteo

Issue 29
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As children we roamed wild,
covered in soot and dust,
baking cakes with mud and
donning crowns made from lice-ridden branches.
So brave, we lay in puddles
without questioning the consequences.
So what now?

        What does it mean to

                bathe in unclean waters?

Does the very act undo the ritual?

        Block out the sun and

                nullify the hymns of the Oceanside gulls?

Seagulls. I am a seagull.

No, I’m an actress—      

        stuck in a play with no dialogue.

Left only with the sin of maturation,

                Sitting, stationary—the in-action

                of repetitious breathing.

Who am I to those girls from the schoolyard?

      The old gathering place where superstitions

                      were made known and tales spun

for when we became wedded and old.

S.J. Matteo

S.J. de Matteo (pronouns: they/them/theirs) is a genderqueer poet and dramaturge from Connecticut. They currently serve as the Associate Producer of the award-winning Mint Theater Company in New York City. They are a proud alum of Sarah Lawrence College.

Issue 29
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