Monday, May 15, 2017

Kristina England


Yellow buses roll into procession line,
teachers on either side of students,
trained pallbearers of sorts.
School darkens behind them,
stagnant air laced with chemicals.
"Poison" says community and
another teacher coughs

School committee waves hands.
"Not to worry. Not to worry.
We'll start scrubbing the dust more
often,we'll replace window caulking,
but let's not dwell on the certainty
of certainty that all of this is
probably connected."

Another teacher coughs cancer.
Yellowed buses leave in long,
quiet line, headlights flashing.
School dims, shroud so subtle,
you could almost miss
the years of ghosts
moving by.

Kristina reads "Early Dismissal at Burncoat High":

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Kristina confesses: "In 2008, a Harvard School of Public Health presentation raised concerns about high levels of PCB in Burncoat and Doherty high school in my home city of Worcester. The union spent the next 8+ years arguing with the school committee; testing was approved on March 31, 2017."

KRISTINA ENGLAND resides in Worcester, Massachusetts. She is a writer and photographer. Her writing has been published in several magazines, including New Verse News, Silver Birch Press, and Topology. She can be followed at

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