Asa Johnson


Dodgeball Days

The captains pick the big guys first,
whooping and talking smack,
while others who’ve been forced to play
stand safely at the back.

But each new choice erodes the shield
as everyone takes a side.
On a closed court or an open field
there’s nowhere safe to hide.

Some kids can run away real fast,
and some evade, being small.
But I’ve learned, always, kids picked last
get hit first with the ball.

Asa Johnson is a poetry MFA candidate and composition instructor at Texas State University in San Marcos, where he also serves as poetry editor for the Porter House Review. His poems have appeared in Impossible Archetype, One Sentence Poems, and elsewhere. He occasionally writes limericks about the news on Twitter @asa-metrical.