The Terror of Physical Education
It seemed you never put down your club
With the handle wrapped in cloth tape.
You patrolled the hallways, playground, and athletic fields
Like a sadistic southern sheriff overseeing slaves.
You thought “abuse of authority” was your job description
As you terrorised children with the constant threat of violence.
Each look, each word, each step you deemed unacceptable
Was met with a coarse verbal shower and the thud of your club.
I feared you. And I hated you at a cellular level.
I despise everything associated with you:
Sports, whistles, nylon shorts and your toxic swagger.
You made me hate masculinity itself.
I wanted you to suffer every indignity you inflicted.
I wanted to see the fear in your face, feel the pounding of your heart.
Years later, I returned to see an older version of you,
Still threatening the innocent with unjust violence.
My pulse quickened, my chest tightened, my head throbbed
With the desire to see you in agony of pain and humiliation.
By now, I guess and hope you are long dead,
But I hope you didn’t pass quickly.
I hope your swagger swerved and sagged
As you were drawn down into despair.
I hope you flailed helplessly against your weakness
With no empathy, no concern, no caress,
From carers who stared down your evil eyes.
I imagine your resolve withered to desperation
As the cries of vengeful children echoed in your ears.
Powerless and immobile, did you recoil in horror
That bullies in scrubs might set your harsh sentence?
When you asked to relieve yourself with dignity,
As you forced so many children to do daily,
I hope your request was loudly denied.
Even these satisfying degradations cannot
Be enough to repay you for demoralising thousands.
Your crimes are timeless and your punishment
Must be unlimited and unrelenting.
I hope you now face eternity alone,
After slipping noisily into permanent hell.
Sometimes, in the distance, I think I hear an agonised cry.
As I imagine it may be you, providence grants me a smile.