A brown boy slumped in a third hand desk

in a shabby classroom in a crumbling school

in a graffiti scarred hood

looks down into a picture on half a page

in a textbook scribbled with crayon

and slips into a rain forest

of greenness, soft earth and shade

marbled by sunlight streaking

through a triple-canopy jungle

where pigmy children in loin cloths

laugh and play in a circle of huts

made of sturdy sticks and mud,

their mothers breast feeding babies

overseen by matriarchs stirring wooden bowls

and tiny men with spears standing guard,

in a picture in a torn and faded book

in a shabby classroom

where he daydreams himself inside a hut

asleep in the soft breezes of night

under a thatched roof of broad leaves

and nobody named Charles lurks outside

waiting to take him down