Fringe Benefit
 Upon One More Student Suicide

I do not remember the twinkle I suppose existed
in your eyes, nor do I wake at night transfixed
and start at the thought of your death and cry.
And it's not until I read Roethke's moving poetry
aloud to class and I recall your straight, brown hair
drooping softly to your shoulders, that a tear
welling in the corner of my eye trickles to my soul.
Souls, I've just learned, often cry out of control.
Had I known then, I would have taught things important
to you along with poems, stories, and how to blend
words to thoughts about conflict, theme, and plot.
But how do you teach that souls are able to mend,
and life's a possession you own that won't break,
that you are always free to give and keep as well as take.