It's just poetry, it won't bite


08.13.19 Posted in today's words by

Sally Toner lives and writes in Reston, Virginia.

By Sally Toner

At age six, I learned about political division. I was a little WASP in a first-grade Catholic class. They had all known each other since kindergarten, while I started the next year with hand-me-down saddle oxfords. The presidential election was upon us, and that day, Mary, Christopher, and Joseph owned the monkey bars. Most recesses, I loved to leap from them with my “Nananananana,” pretending to be the Bionic Woman. That day, my jumper was fresh washed stiff plaid, but my clothes weren’t the reason I stopped climbing.

“Who are you voting for?” Eileen, the tiniest mean girl I ever knew, asked.

“Carter, of course,” I said, and squared my shoulders before reaching up, securing a foothold, and beginning to ascend.

“Nope, you can’t come up,” she sneered. “These bars are for Ford supporters only.”

That day, I fell to the dirt, brushed the gravel from my knees, and tried my best to rub the stink of their steel from my hands.

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