Dear, Mr. Berkovitch

Dear Mr. Berkovitch,

Hello. Good day. Is my grammar alright thus far?

My writing has all the correct punctuations?

With all the correct tenses and verbs?


If you, Mr. Berkovitch, are still reading this,

I assume all is going well.

And I have the correct punctuations

And the correct tenses and verbs.


Because if not,

My work would no longer be stiff iron straight before you,

But crumpled and deteriorating in the endless bottom,

Of you ever so infamous garbage pail.

But for now, is my grammar alright?


My little army of black printed soldiers,

Words standing boldly against the white landscape,

Sacrificed for your boxed in crusade.

My lovely words and becoming phrases

Abused and humiliated by your checkboxes.


And my little men

Once marching ready for action before me

Just never seem to fall anything but short of you

You, the master of correct punctuation

The master of the correct tenses and verbs.

The powerful warrior with the powerful red pen.


Is there no pleasing of such a being?

Are you, the warrior, just so perfect

That one soldier fallen means the whole army fallen?

That one box unchecked

Means no boxes can be checked?

That a single misplaced semicolon,

Means declaring World War III on all?


And I do not blame just you, Mr. Berkovitch,

One man among the many,

All wary watchers of the apostrophe and the comma.

All hungry for failure,

And all discontented with success.


Hours upon hours of my time

Spent hunting for the inadequate soldiers

Armed with a rifle labeled A, B, C, D, or F.

And every bullet used,

Only further tears at my own men,

My perfectly aligned men,

Who return from the war cold and with PTSD

All the same, too scared to be their own.


I want to win the war, but you, Mr. Berkovitch,  win many a battle,

Between the first day and D-Day, otherwise known as due day,

My words become hollow and empty,

No longer resembling my own, but resembling everyone else’s

My apologizes, is that apostrophe in the right spot?


My words are tarnished and manipulated

My voice adrift helplessly in the wind

Squeezed to fit your standards

Until even I, the former of great armies,

have lost my one power

And lost control over my words

And do not know what I am portraying

As long as it fits what you want me to portray.


So Mr. Berkovitch,

My work cold and pristine before you,

Stripped of all outside beauty and life and style,

Please, do tell

I still have the correct punctuations, right?



Your Beloved Students


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