POP Editorial Services LLC | Guest Post: Mister Stevens, by W.K. Dwyer
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Guest Post: Mister Stevens, by W.K. Dwyer

The writing prompt in January’s Hop On Newsletter was “Don’t tell.” I’m pleased to publish here W.K. Dwyer’s response, a poem titled “Mister Stevens.” Do you remember Freshman English class?

Mister Stevens

by W.K. Dwyer

there was this thing you heard
in writing class. you remember—
first period, maybe, spent staring
eyelids half empty, like a subtle hint

aimed at mister Stevens — Reginald Stevens
really? you thought to yourself,
and that bow tie, yeah that’s trending
as he scribbled words madly on the board:
“and the poem kicked butt”
“expository!” he shouted, like a call to arms,
twirling around, to face a battalion sleeping
and then sniffed and sipped loudly on tea
as if not blushing
and you looked down,
set your phone to silent
so you could text, because it was life or death
survival through sarcasm, like: oh my god, these teachers
check yer yahoo, we were borne
in the last millennium
or maybe you had your head sideways
propped on an elbow, hiding an earbud
and had Swimming Pools playin’
because them lyrics was so lit
unlike the whatever, coming from mister
half-British, half-what-is-that? accent
mister Couldn’t Make It As A Writer
droning on, like a slow yawn,
set to the crashing bore
of Powerpoint slides
but, you know, maybe there was a moment
like a glitch, a stupid selfie gone viral
a moment where he f’d up
and something not totally un-hip slipped through
floated like that feather in Forrest Gump
your parents made you watch that day
drifted its way, casually, past all those sleeping heads
and into the back row
and maybe it got in, like you did that club, underage
in through that other ear of yours
and for some reason it echoed, like all the way, turnt up
yeah, maybe you thought to yourself:
show and don’t tell? wait, that actually makes sense
and you kept it with you, sort of forgotten
like a gun you’d never need
and then one day, when you found yourself beat up
looking for a job, a new life, new you, having lost everything
cos you liked too much, or unliked too little
driving home one weekend
to cry on old shoulders
maybe one day, you found yourself digging through attic boxes
saw the poem marked “A”
and you remembered having heard that thing
imma write that poem, your words played back
imma kill this, Mister Stevens, I got this
imma spit some shit, like Kendrick

and you did
Dwyer head shotW.K. Dwyer is the author of The Killing Flower, a social sci-fi novel inspired by the events of 9/11. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering and has done post-graduate work in AI and cognitive science. He works as a government contractor, developing targeting systems for counterterrorism.

Katherine Pickett
  • Powerful. Good choice, Katherine! I’m going to share this with a creative writing professor friend.

    February 5, 2017 at 1:55 pm