Sat, 10/29/2016 - 20:35 -- taa1542

I tell myself until I believe it 

The faces in front of me come to school for a reason 

And it aint just cuz their mom gets hit with a ticket 

If they decide to stay home cuz they just want to kick it. 

No, they want, like we all do, what this world’s got to offer 

And hope that school and its rules can make life’s blows a bit softer. 

And maybe, just maybe today they’ll learn something new, 

Something that fits like a year old shoe, 

Or catch the scintillating scent of someone who 

Can play a move so smooth that it can fool a fool 

Into thinking or dreaming or contemplating 

The possibility that hostilities and hating  

Are NOT what must make a man, a woman, a nation or a state 

Of mind that pushes love aside to make room for hate. 


We say the mighty pen can vanquish the sword 

But what do we say of the gallons of blood that are poured 

Down our gutters each day because this one sees it this way 

And that one sees it his way and aint no way that our way  

Could ever be your way. They say we say you say I say  

ENOUGH today!  Because your way IS our way and we all gotta play  

Or take our balls and go home.  Some wise words in this poem, hey? 

So what to do to give kids and teachers a break? 

How do we make school a place that will hum, 

Maybe just take a break and heal the broken sys-tum? 

Maybe we make our instructional minutes count double 

To pull our education out of its present trouble. 

Let’s begin by giving me twenty 

Students to teach instead of forty-three 

Maybe then I’ll want them all to write for me 

Because I’ll be able to read their papers and still leave at five-thirty. 

Give me one kid, a good book, and some paper 

And I can pull off the impossible caper 

Of taking a teen who NEVER has read  

And lift up his hopes like I’m raising the dead. 

But tie my hands to a classroom that holds forty-three 

And the ones who are blind don’t let anyone see. 


Mom? Yeah, Mother always finds her way into my words, 

Been dead for over a year but still she wants to be heard. 

It is she, yes it’s she who set my soul on fire, 

Who keeps setting love’s bar not lower but higher, 

Who keeps me alive, and, oh yeah, another 

Small matter we can say of everyone’s mother 

That keeps all of us mindful of mama’s true worth 

Is that she said “Yes,” when it came to our birth. 

So Mom always said to me, like yours probably did, too, 

“Son, I’m not expecting nothing from you. 

No, not nothing, but something, something grand, 

And I’m not talking about money or acres of land 

Or barrels of oil, or diamonds, or gold, 

Because none of that matters, unless you can hold 

Your heart in your hands, and give it, for free 

And set out to be all that GOD means you to be! 

Stand tall and let all know you by your word— 

Think what it says and make certain it’s heard.” 


So like Mama says, and I’m shouting it out: 

Let school be the place where we stamp out self-doubt. 

Where reason is the season and treason against humanity 

That is willfully perpetrated by the greed and vanity 

Of the few who believe their due 

Should be more than they allow me or you 

Will wither and fade,  

And the only grade 

This teacher will have to give 

Is the A to the fighters who say “Live and let live,” 

And who come to school not because they have to 

Because it’s the law but because they have to 

Because, because, because . . . and they’ll swear this is true 

Because really there’s nothing out there better. To DO. 

That was the bell, but wait!  There's one more thing I must say. 

Don’t take your ball home.  Come out.  And play.


Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 



This is amazing. It certaintly deserves recognition!! What was your inspiration? Did it just come to you naturally or did it take you a while to find the right words? 

Need to talk?

If you ever need help or support, we trust for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741