She steps into her long black shell,
Gray buttoned blouse closed at her neck,
Gold Star of David hidden well,
Her heart alone can feel its work.
My teacher sits beside me now;
Recalled stardom still makes her smile,
But skill has ebbed, will not allow,
And yet her God she thanks the while.
Her life has changed; she cannot play
To audiences in her sway.
Still she instructs with fervent love,
Conveys to us the glow above,
The joy with which she once could say
I bring you all I’m genius of.
Bruce J. Berger teaches College Writing and Creative Writing at American University in Washington, DC. His first novel, The Flight of the Veil, was published in 2020 by Black Rose Writing. He lives in Silver Spring, Maryland, with his wife, Laurie.