The Double

Dante Gabriel Rossetti: How They Met Themselves (1864)
I’m conscious of myself
watching myself
when people tell me things
you’d normally react to
a tear a frown
a smile

I cannot accept
she writes
this grade
Even in the assignment
there are no markings

A smile
& silence

sitting at the back
not reading
when her turn comes
seldom turning up
& when she does
a smile
& silence

I harden up my act
of teacherly indignation
Or is that back to front?
Polish the carapace
while inside
feeling nothing?
Nothing to be said

Nothing to say

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