Senior Cut Day

Jared Harel Click to

jharel-195Jared Harel’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Tin House, The American Poetry Review, The Threepenny Review, The Southern Review and elsewhere.  His poetry chapbook The Body Double (2012) was recently published by Brooklyn Arts Press.  He lives in Astoria and plays drums for the NYC-based rock band The Dust Engineers.

An act of defiance: I decided to show up,
attend every class, even take notes
though you couldn’t do much with three or four students,
either Brian Hoffer with his coded binder
and early-admissions letter to Brown,
or Megan Dennis, recluse cellist, one absence shy
of being held back. While my friends
played hooky, drove to Jones Beach with Frisbees
and six-packs, expired sunblock and disposable
cameras, I stayed back and ate lunch
with sophomores, let them in on my own
private joke. It was 1999. The Rapture
upon us. Even the President was talking blowjobs
on C-SPAN. Getting high that night
at the bowling alley parking lot, I heard Andre
pantsed Erin, how Goth Jimmy sported a swimsuit, his torso
so pale it outshone the sea. Marilyn Manson seared
our speakers, our ’86 Buicks and rust-
colored Fords. I could feel him slither
through caked makeup, raking in profits. I could hear
spring skidding towards summer, that deep heat
we worshiped and feared. Who knew
where any of us would be in a year? Pot smoke rose
and clouded our windows. I chose a college
whose mascot was extinct.