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It was the last day.
Names and Have a great summers
Had been scribbled into yearbooks.
Presents had been lovingly handed to teachers.

For six years, we’d had last days.
We’d sung cute little songs,
And signed the yearbooks,
The amount of friends growing each year.

We’d always seen them—the oldest kids—
Going to the ceremony.
We’d always heard the music from the hallway.

But we never thought that we’d actually be those fifth-graders.

And we never imagined how strange it was when you’re sitting
on a rug in a classroom for the last time.
And you’ve had your last recess.

And there you are, staring into your friends’ eyes,
Not knowing whether to scream out with joy
Or wail and explode with tears.
Because the bell, that we have heard ring thousands of times,
Is screaming its shrill, heartbreaking call,
The sorrowful
“Brrring!” that had told us time to go so many times,
Was sounding for the last time,
Like it was hollering,
“I miss you,” forlornly,
But it was too late—
We had already gone away.

And we’d never hear its call as students of that school again.

The Last Last Day Courtney Cooperman
Courtney Cooperman, 12
Short Hills, New Jersey