Corporal Punishment


Mrs. Moore was an old woman, yet built like a sumo wrestler. She was my fifth grade teacher at St. Johns. I remember her immense ankles, and the white socks and black shoes that she wore every day.
She caught me passing a folded piece of paper to Cathy Smith. I had drawn a stick figure with a big penis.
I could see the anger in Mrs. Moore’s face when she looked at it. She picked me up and started shaking me, my head and legs flopping like a rag doll. Then she let go, and I fell to the floor.
I tried to walk away from her. I walked such a crooked line my classmates laughed–they thought I was joking.
I was always joking. She literally shook the shit out of me–I had checked my underwear afterward.

I told my mother who said, “You have gotten so fat, how could anybody pick you up?”
I guess I was a rascal and got what I deserved,
but I do think my life since the fifth grade has been a little shaky.


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