blue tongue

Ms. Nancy’s perfume meant homework, a big jar of glue and loose leaf scored with a ruler on the folds. Threats of adhesive in the mouth to punish a blue tongue. Crimson checks and the blunders specified with crisscross marks.

Ms. Nancy’s perfume smelled like the front office and phones, notices to home and the executive nun’s pressed cotton tunic and veil. The carbon monoxide fumes during the trip to school. The churning of my stomach in her classroom.

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