10-Line Tuesday

July 2, 2019

let’s not sit this one out

It’s hot, as our fathers used to say, as blazes, the signs pointing ardently toward caution.
They are not without reason, our faces already reddened by the first wave of effort, 
and the forecast unrelenting. But the opponents are in it for the kill, lungs sustained 
by the kind of fire that spares nothing and leaves claw marks in the dirt, as if Earth 
were being dragged against her will. They rush to the field in droves, so it’s tempting 
to do as our former teachers once advised, swivel our cheeks away from trouble, 
turn a deaf ear to the theater of taunts, and exit the stadium untouched. They didn’t see 
this coming, those sanguine purveyors of stale graham crackers and Dixie-cupped juice, 
but they were wrong even then, our flimsy defiance a poor cousin of courage. 
A film of char remains from any silence. We cannot make this same mistake again.