Kit Williamson

Boarding School Self-Portrait


The sun ascends with violin strings
awakening underground, basement
practice rooms unlocked before dawn,
swelling with arpeggios, canary

descanting, the sun scaling down.
Here you learned to close your ears
to this diurnal beauty, or else sit
dumbstruck in your dormitory, sore

ear pressed against the floor. Here you
learned failure, mute fingers pressed
against your hardwood desk. Here you
learned time, the oak trees planted outside

have already outgrown you: Three years,
and you'll become just a person I write to.