How To Make Paperboats

I press down on the paper with my jaw, 

Wrestling with it. 

Commanding that thin sheet was much easier before, 

Swift, lithe folds: 

The boat would magically appear, 

Zero effort, taken for granted. 

The computer screen flashed at me, 

‘How To Make Paperboats… ‘ 

I chuckled. 

I’d have scorned at such a site not long before; 

Being the paperboat purist I was, 

Pointing my once slender finger at any user, 

Laughing, my fangs bared. 

Now using my forehead as a pivot, I had to press down on the sheet. 

Skull dug deep into the fibres, the raw pores on my skin cried as 

The slow, enunciated movements sent jolts down my spine; 

If my head shifted, my boat would spring back into its A4 form. 

When I made paperboats, I didn’t hear the sultry caress of the waves anymore, I heard the cackling jeers of onlookers, 

“Look his boat has no mast, he’s doomed. ” 

“Such a crumpled mess that is!” 

Maybe my having been one of this group, 

In the impulsive, trigger happy days long gone past, 

Attracted the bacteria; 

Invited it to glut on my hand, 

Feasting finger by finger: 

Going in for seconds and thirds until its slimy tongue, 

Slithers up my arm. 

It’s welcome massively overstayed. 

My hand holds down the folded sheet, 

One step from completion: 

I bite onto the dry paper, 

Tugging it as my vessel comes to life. 

Taking a step back, I observe it; 

A tattered ship, crushed but desperate to exist. 

I smile as my hand scrolls down on the webpage: 

“How To Make Paperboats with one hand.” 

Akash Shroff, 12 AICE – Staff Writer

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