by Maryann Corbett
What rectitude upholds us, motionless
in these prom pictures!
by its formal strictures
vows we will make the lives the world expects:
Marry, breed, and nurture. Light the dark
with faithful and well-regulated sex.
Pair, à la Noah’s Ark.
Some didn’t, though no pale, soft-focus reasons
appear in the bland yearbook I peruse,
moved by a black-framed notice in this season’s
Quarterback, scholar, icon from a time
when silks were draped more softly, creases were crisper,
he died of a disease some old friends name
in a sobered whisper,
while others, those who didn't move away,
knowing the truth, rewrote his youthful mythos
with gentle exegesis on the lie
he lived in with us,
and I (who with the letter’s revelation
will reinterpret truths I thought I knew)
wonder, What uprights in our firm foundation
were not pierced through?