I am not a genius-the professor claims-scribbling the words
on the chalkboard in the classroom,
students filing in and taking their seats. One student brings him
an orange instead of an apple,
and he eats it while sitting in his swiveling chair, spewing shit
about the temperature in Great Britain or Canada.
I only listen half-heartedly. I scribble other words in
my notebook-words like "molasses," "airplane," and "brigade,"
words that sound out of tune and not quite right.
It’s almost time to go. We write a paper on thermodynamics.
I pick up my books, and we gather in
the hallway like moths gather around a flame,
hoping for the warmth of another celestial body.