He Was Different


In the playgrounds
where the boys played tag & cooties
and primary war

he stayed with the girls
on the hill by the seesaws while they
peeled oranges & sang & smiled their smiles.

And when the boys took the fields
to throw their balls around
he stayed in the cellar
with an electric guitar.

In high school they shunned him
for not fitting in—
a blue sock in the bin full of whites.

Always the last to be picked for a team.

In the office they couldn’t figure him out—
an algebra waltz with a missing step.

Where did he come from?
What makes him tick?

And when his clock stopped
they tried to come up with a eulogy—

Just couldn’t think of what to say

‘He was different though, he really was’

Even his ashes rode a different wind.


Frank William Finney was born in Massachusetts and educated at the University of Massachusetts and Simmons University (formerly Simmons College). HIs work has appeared in over 100 publications including RE:AL—The Journal of Liberal Arts (Texas), The Maryland Poetry Review, (USA), Orbis: an international quarterly of poetry and prose (UK), Paris/Atlantic (France), Offerte Speciale (Italy), The Nation (Thailand), and The Best of the Vine Leaves Literary Journal (Australia). He currently lives in Bangkok, Thailand, where he teaches at Thammasat University.