#13 (Part III)

#13 'Teach' Envelope (Part III)
     I turned on my heel to look over the classroom.  Paper faces, some pale and some brown with age, stared back at me.  There was even one where someone had used a cigarette to burn holes for eyes.  I did not look towards this one; my skin was already crawling with revulsion.  As if talking to real children, and not oversized paper dolls, I addressed the class, "I expect you to behave.  This is important.  Someone has given you an identity through art.  I am telling you about yourselves."
     My words were a teacher’s words.  They were the only protection I had against the waxy green eyes pasted to some faces, and the chalk brown drawn on others.  There was even, amazingly enough, a face painted in crisp watercolor reds and purples.  They all stared at me, unhindered by the noises that brought unwelcome memories to the surface of my mind.  How well I remembered the taste of fear in my mouth, the prickle of nerves down my arms and legs.  These were reminders of that night with my husband long ago.  These feelings I had hoped to never experience again. 

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