2011

2011

The 2011 Poet Laureate is Rebecca Kelly. Her poem is titled "We Are."

Tap. Tap. Tapping foot. 

with the snare drum snapping.

Team flags flapping.

marching in sync with the

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

Tap. Tap. Tapping foot.

Waiting on the bench

for the coach to put me in the game.

 

Cheerleaders shout WE ARE

Tap. Tap.

DUNBAR.

Tapping turns into clapping.

and clapping to rapping

rhythms and equations that

calculators 

can’t resolve.

Water can’t dissolve

the need to tap the mic.

tap the mat.

tap into reality,

because WE ARE

Tap. Tap.

DONE.

 

Legs won’t stop bouncing on the backs of the desk

racks. 

I don’t know if it’s my energy or if it’s thanks to

my  skinny venti double triple frappe white caramel 

dulce macchiato

—hold the cream.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

I twitch as I tap, as I—

solve for x,

change kilos to pounds.

What is pi?

Pie is round.

Tap. Tapping foot.

 

Columbus sailed the ocean blue,

in something borrowed and something new? 

Tap. Tapping foot.

 

Hola. Bonjour. Hallo.

Nosotros Somos…

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

Cell buzzing in my pocket,

earbud bu-bu-buzzing in my brain.

I’ve gotta tune it all out,

tap it all out.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

Backpacks bustle, 

keeping their eyes low.

“Excuse me, do you mind?”

She snaps.

Just another brick in my wall.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

You can try,

But you can’t stop the beat of my

tapping foot.

Tap the floor,

tile floor,

beating ‘til nothing sounds right unless it’s got a 

little

Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

But in this moment,

our legs standstill.

Instead, we shout WE ARE

Clap. Clap.

DONE-BAR.

 

We may be done with Dunbar,

but we are not done tapping,

not done working and pushing ourselves.

We are not done tapping

because we are

Tap. Tap.

the movers,

And we are

Tap. Tap.

the shakers of this world.

 

We sit uniformly

adorned with the same tassel and similar smiles.

And we listen.

We listen for our chance

to tap

across the platform,

Receiving the deserved validation of our work.

 

We leave this room,

aware of the rhythms in this world

that are calling for a change,

calling for our

Tap.

Tap.

Tap.

 

-Becca Kelly

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