Teacher,

By Annette Marie Hyder

you taught me to bottle my tears,
to make a potion of my desire for you
and decant it into a flask,
to put these things on the farthest dusty shelf
that I would need a ladder for.
You taught me to roll my thoughts of you into cigars
lit, but left unsmoked, their plumes and ashes
allowed to disperse upon the wind — untasted.
First
you taught me to do without you.
Then
you taught me how to forget you,
teacher.
You are a sigil in my mind
of things once remembered clearly
a symbol for something I never lost
because you were never mine.
Teacher, I have learned my lesson
well.

(NaPoWriMo day 24)