I dunno says the boy at the back of the class
with the flat black hair and the flat black glasses
ignoring the raised hands infront of him.
If you’re going to be like that then why bother with living at all?
We think about this, I write it down.
The girl to my left is hungover
staring at the handout as if to form a point.
I wonder if I should nudge her awake.
Our tutor turns away from the board
where she has written why bother
in green ink. The pen is running out.
We sit quiet as she looks for a spare.
Well go on she says
to the girl whose presentation it is
if you’re going to think like that
then why do you bother to live?
The girl’s name is Emily or Melissa
and she hasn’t prepared for this question
Because she says because…
I think she has to live because we’d miss her.
I didn’t mean to speak. They all turn.
Emily/Melissa looks affronted, though I’ve saved her,
the boy toys with my words on his tongue
how to mix them round and make them wrong.
The tutor takes in the faces
that she is losing to boredom
and what to have for tea tonight.
Ok, thank you. If you turn to page three…
After the class the hungover girl stops me
grabs my arm and shields her eyes
as she peels apart her dry lips to say
Can I borrow your notes?