by Jason D. DeHart
They placed him in a low
reader class because he could
not recite from the board.
There was no special name,
not like there is now. He was
not a bumblebee, or a yellow
bird, or a raven. He was not given
a color. Not blue, gold, or white.
These were the days before such
disguising took place.
The rest of the class went one
way, he went the other. It was simple,
but noticeable. Knowable.
No one needed to tell him
Memories of a trembling
finger following a line of text.
The sound of children laughing.
It took forever, the recital.
When the teacher finally found out
that all he needed was a set of glasses
to aid in the reading, it was only
after months of the special class
not so far away from the rest
of the youngsters, but far enough
to know. Close enough
to remember even now.
Jason D. DeHart is a writer and teacher. He is currently a PhD student in Literacy Studies at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.