(for Ashley Huss)





Ashley in glasses: she looks so mature

That ancient Mr. Riley is a child

Beside her knowing presence.  Insecure,

He looks for flaws – but no reports are filed.

Her former verbal indiscretions, wild

And innocent, are not in evidence.

In sheer sophistication domiciled,

She seems a paragon of common sense.

She models forth a braininess, intense

And yet restrained, that nobody expected.

It looks like she has mastered all events.

It looks like all her talents are perfected.

She seems insightful and supremely schooled.

Rejoice, Miss Huss: at last you have me fooled!




–Tom Riley