On the first day of school and the first page of the book we are introduced to the classmate who instantly becomes our narrator's crush (and who will continue so strikingly all the way to the end). The crush of course is everything Hine is not: poised, athletic, and popular. And the spark of attraction is oddly mutual, though certainly differing in intensity and kind. That afternoon as Daryl is walking home from school, the crush on his bicycle delivering papers offers him a ride.
Squeezed in front of him uncomfortably astraddle
Between his pedalling legs and the handlebars,
I saw flash past the blocks that I had trudged that morning
As he cut corners and careened about parked cars.
He had to reach around me to get each newspaper
He threw, without stopping, onto somebody's lawn.
When I admired his aim, which was not quite unerring,
He laughed: "You ought to see me do it before dawn."
I wondered then how many disgruntled subscribers
Have any idea how fortunate they are,
As they retrieve their daily papers from the bushes,
To have The Evening Sun brought by the morning star?
(Of course I quote this partly for its similarity and contrast to "Editio Princeps*" which we discussed at our last meeting.)