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Periaktoi Writing Post

Volume 53
Issue 1

Single Visual Art Post

  • Essay
Streams of Consciousness
Caroline Barker

Bell rings. Feet running down the hall. Book-bags falling to the floor. Classmates. Smart. On reading level N. Good enough always good enough. Teacher giving me a mean look again. Read out loud in front of the class everyone staring. No thank you level N: impossible,  except The Giving Tree the little boy cuhlim clib try it again you can do it clhhhhiiim ed closer climbed yes yes you got it up Show them you can   but so behind always behind only on F class, everyone should be past level L now eight reading levels ugh how can’t you’re bad at reading not good enough never good enough

“The little girl whimpered as the ferocious tiger ran past the vehicle.”

Perfect pronunciation didn’t mess up–like me–always mess up bottle his angry red eyes belt chasing me only a broken glass cup promise to clean it up please I will I will his red eyes still glaring not good enough never good enough


Ahhhhhh not me already always behind never ready no one to help not good enough never good enough it’s your turn go or I’ll push you b-u-u-u-u-t-t-t sissy I can’t swim we waited in line for an hour you have to go don't be such a baby not good enough never good enough

Don’t speak then they’ll know she was never home to teach me faking for forever they’ll know maybe they already know the boy’s black eyes teacher’s red eyes his red eyes always mess up not good enough never good enough

“You on the back row.”

Teacher’s raised her voice. Her eyes stared me down. “Look at me when I’m talking to you.” Yelling still now at baby brother helpless only two years old too young to know abuse like me can’t help him not good enough never good enough

Don’t know that word too long only know words from The Giving Tree climbed yes up the branches yes you’re improving so much sweetie good enough? worthy?


Not good enough never good enough

That’s bigger than seven letters can’t bad at reading not good enough never good enough bad daughter bad sister

“Haha that’s easy. I can read a harder one.”