Lunch—deferred

red apple on a gray background

All he needed to do was print his answers. But when he plugged his Alpha Smart into the printer and keyed the sequence to print, the device failed. We waited—in vain—for help from Astor’s Tech support, a CUNY intern in over his head. I scribed his answers and then walked him to class.

All I needed to do was pick up another students’ paper. Then I could eat lunch. But he bolted from his counselor’s office, saying he would give his test in. His test paper had a teary message, and no answer sheet came with it. When I finally found him, his answer sheets had a rant written all over it, continuing on three subsequent pages—the back of other students’ permission slips.

All I had time to eat before starting 7th period—the first of three in a row—was a few bites from an apple.

growling stomach
students protest
assigned seats

Photo by an_vision

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Frank J. Tassone

Frank J. Tassone lives in New York City's "back yard" with his wife and son. He fell in love with writing after he wrote his first short story at age 12 and his first poem in high school. He began writing haiku and haibun seriously in the 2000s. His haikai poetry has appeared in Failed Haiku, Cattails, Haibun Today, Contemporary Haibun Online, Contemporary Haibun, The Haiku Foundation and Haiku Society of America member anthologies. He is a contributing poet for the online literary journal Image Curve, and a performance poet with Rockland Poets. When he's not writing, Frank works as a special education high school teacher in the Bronx. When he's not working or writing, he enjoys time with his family, meditation, hiking, practicing tai chi and geeking out to Star Wars, Marvel Cinema and any other Sci-Fi/Fantasy film and TV worth seeing.

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