First Nights

 By Laurinda Lind
 It wasn’t hard to thrill us at fourteen, 
 fifteen, just open up the gym, 
 lower the lights, get a bad band 
 to play. These same floors we walked 
 all day but now that someone said so, 
 it was a dance. We could dance, 
 we could be danced, we might 
 choose or be chosen, shape our own 
 hands and feet to shout what
 was too hard to say in the day. 
 We were accepted for a dollar
 or for free into a nation made 
 new after dark, where we were not 
 yet tainted by the bad things that come 
 once you finally get what you want. 

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