“I hope if anything like that ever happened to you, you’d tell me right away.”
“Do you remember Howard Durst?”
I can name names now, because he’s dead.
Here’s another: Concord United Methodist Church in Englewood, Ohio.
Rod King, also dead, the minister who covered it up to save his job
(I’ll say it now, I’ll say it) because all the popular and powerful church ladies
rallied around Mary June Durst, director of the Wesley Choir for children
in 4th grade through 6th grade (and there I was, joining it in 5th grade
so I could make new friends). Mary June knew, kept it quiet, but I suppose
I can imagine her horror, her shame. Maybe I’m angrier at the bitch crew
of women’s circle ladies, including my mother’s best friend
(ask me, and I’ll name her, too—I’m holding back, but ask me),
who had heard the gossip for years, about other girls and Howard Durst,
but chose not to tell my mother, lording it over her, enjoying the secret,
when I could have been saved. Spared from what? A dirty kiss
in the church kitchen, my mother just a few feet away, or the other,
the other thing was an exploring hand up my thigh, skirting the
edge of (unspeakable, gross) as the choir bus drove us all to
Michigan or Kentucky, that part I can’t remember, but the bus was
full of people and I didn’t say anything because what if I was wrong,
what if I was right?
Today’s Poem a Day Chapbook Challenge prompt was “Dialogue.” Like other poems with long lines, this one does not present super well here on WordPress. In all but the last two lines, if there’s a very short line, assume that it’s actually supposed to be the end of the preceding line.