That is all I can do,
All I know how to do.
Yet my principal says that's not good enough,
My counselor says I need a higher goal.
But what is it worth telling them?
The only connection they have with me is a five paragraph essay I wrote about myself in tenth grade.
The only people who know all about me, about my strengths,
Are my teachers, the only ones who see me
As more than federal tax dollars
Or a score on the WKCE.
The principal, the counselor, they try to act like they are equals with me.
But if they never descend from their enormous offices,
Never mingle on a day-to-day basis with the two thousand odd students under their care,
They can never really understand me.
Neither, then, can the college representatives, who fight tooth and nail
For every precious scrap of vague student interest, who expect that they can learn everything
From a three hundred word essay and a letter of recommendation.
The ones who can hold my interest, who understand my quirks,
Are my teachers, who applaud my achievements
And accept when I can only try.
They realize that,
And they never give up on me.
My teachers, they shape
My view of society, my ethics,
My very understanding of the way the person connects to the world.
They shape me into the person I become.
One different from my parents, my friends,
From society's stereotypes.
One that knows that trying
Is just as important as succeeding.