The Student's Tale

           When in October the cold winds doth blow

Blustery omens that show future snow,

This is when we find our dear English teachers

Encourage their students endeavor such features

As to design such a product giv'n hence

That exemplifies their own persn'l two-pence

Based on the subjects of just finished studies

That they may therewith procure knowledge with ease

Of what shall appearance make on their exam

Discour'ging the usual Test Day's Eve cram,

Causing their ad'lescent brains thus engage,

Procure something 'riginal across their minds' stage.

But much more than that they hope each one applies

The lessons that literature doth supply.

The goal of a teacher: do all to impart

The wisdom of others through inspired art:

Life always proves to be much more complex

Than the multiple choice standard'zation corrects.

From which high end stems the following product,

Result of an effort found somewhat neurotic.

Herewith is disclosed a most curious tale

Of a curious char'cter of varied avail,

An added appendage to Chaucer's grand party

A pers'nage whose varied traits are found most hardy,

With listed profession and its true degree

Proving herself ever amiable.

        There once was a Student, a real teenage girl

Who, having grown up in an area rural,

Came to reside in suburban par'dise

Possessing its share of both virtue and vice.

A girl of sixteen having such pleasant manner—

A “Please” and a “thank you” as her constant banner.

She always took care to be polite and friendly

Known friend to all of the gen'ral assembly.

Studious, org'nized and smart she appeared

With 'ccasion'lly manifest wisdom past years;

But known to those found more close in proxim'ty

More was observed beyond casual “witty”:

A girl of deep thought to the point of forgetting

And setting aside of what others deemed fitting.

Her inner mentality 'yond status quo,

The norms of society she did often forgo.

        Her days were filled as with fanciful daydream

Imag'nation ruling her thoughts to extreme.

High hope of success also laced with uniqueness

Hidden 'hind efforts procured by duress.

Her mind was a cyclone of thoughts diving deep

Through levels that no peer of hers dared to leap;

Transfixed with aesthetics that nature doth bear

Hours flew by with her gazing at “air”.

But her finest achievements, the acts performed brazen,

Were those that she realized by use of her pen;

Words were her art and she painted with care

Scenes and ideas with implied “au contraire!”

        Of her facets another was that of good looks:

Shining brown hair as if straight from a book;

Tall, thin and elegant—that was her presence,

Seen presentation (to some an offense)

Was such that few boys ever dared to approach her

Excepting those asking, “Pray, what is your college year?”

But such was her nature that she didn't mind

Rather she cried, “Why, this suits me just fine!

I can live as I mean to without common pause

Unlike other girls 'fraid to commit faux pas!”

She kept on in learning and living her life

Her religious devotion thus kept it from strife.

Each night before dreams and the pillow hit her head,

She'd say nightly prayers before climbing in bed.

She always tried best to di as she knew right,

Dictated by conscious with all of her might.

She was wont to love others, that they might be holpen,

Service her creed, from the Bible begotten.

        Thus her path crosses on this fateful day

With yours as her tale now begins to give sway,

Taking the stage with its morals and humor

Both flaws and virtues threat'ning to consume her.

Pay close attention to what she shall say

'Twixt these white pages and into the fray.

She casts her mind presently as to now show

What she possesses in all of her “know”:

A tale of a girl not much diff'rent than she.

Perhaps that's the point, but it's all up to thee

As to how you will take this new tale, at face value?

Or something a little more diff'cult to swallow?

One way or another, please proceed with caution

As you bravely press on through this quaint narration.


The Student's Prologue:


“Hello friends! A good day, good tidings to thee

'Tis a pleasure to be here with such company

As to brighten one's spirits and while away time

Onward in journey to place near-sublime.

An audience! What a rare pleasure indeed

Rarely thus am I viewed though I silently plead

For someone to notice the thoughts of my heart

So diff'rent from most, yes, a setting apart.

This is the state of my life, most ironic,

Condemned to normality, plague of bubonic,

Caught in society's ideal perfection

Wrapping me up in unneeded connection

Of which I hold escape no fonder desire

From this place to 'magined potential much higher

Than that which behind my facade I encase

An artful disguise to the whole human race.

From such distress stems a poem of degree

That portrays my outlook on humanity.

Listen herewithly while I will disclose

Just what I am thinking through cleverest prose.”


The Student's Tale:


“I tell of a tale of a girl just like me:

Sitting and sighing and feeling unfree

From what has befallen her life's current frame'

Elysia is what can be known as her name.

A poor peasant girl living cent'ries ago

Living in medieval feudal time throes;

But her world was found to be smaller than that:

A peasant confined to a laborer's spat.

To a system beholden, from decades so countless

Fraught with mistreatment designed to depress

One's spirits though hard you may try to withstand

The effort of those who would make you the damned.

No fam'ly to name, a poor orphan was she,

Mistreated, condemned to a life's poverty.

In lieu of her parents, taskmaster's corruption

Replaced gentle love and enforced rough production.

Not a moment of rest from sun-up to sun-down,

Never to once set foot outside of town,

If town it can be called, as such was its state

Of entrapment amidst tiny buildings of slate.

        Thus is our heroine's lot at this time;

Quite dismal, assur'dly, ruined in her prime.

But this is not all, yes, the plot herewith worsens;

I tell you she wasn't 'mong ignorant persons;

Her mind was suscept'ble to the “devil's notions”

Of higher existence and such precognitions

As that men were made so to rise in this sphere

Of meager mortal'ty, past “inferior”—

Which was what her now current status decreed,

A social enforcement none could supersede.

A girl with big thoughts, she was trapped in her brain

Filled with ideas: 'twas her cause to complain

Of what is agreed as a hapless existence

A constant drag down on her moral persistence.

Prestige or power, course these were denied

To this miserable wretch, though her soul often cried,

“Release me from these social chains that encircle

My progression inside of this tale oratorical.

Is this my fate to live day after day

In an empty existence, a life on delay

Of all that I think I could somehow achieve

If only my innermost thoughts were perceived

By someone who could help me from these ashes rise

From this barren wasteland to see the sun rise

On a glorious new realization-spurred hour

Of just what man can do, if he's given the pow'r?”

        And so she continued on, day after day

Stumbling throughout life without a clear way

Of finding just what it might be that she wanted:

The happiness that in all others seemed flaunted,

Till fin'lly the master hit her hard one time

And somehow that act threw her over the line.

She turned and she ran with tears stinging her eyes

Flowing rivers of water, abundant supplies.

Half blindly by grief and the rage in her heart,

Running hurriedly on to the woods she did dart

Till at last she found the right place of seclusion,

Quiet and peace were found there in profusion,

Where at the moment she could just ignore

The questions so loudly her logic implored,

Temporal questions of full habitation

That changes could be made toward mitigation.

        But for the pres'nt she was calm as she sat

And reasoned within herself that that was that.

Fin'lly she was free, even though it was briefly

Having prov’n to herself such things as chiefly

That she had to power to change her condition

However temp'rary might be the rendition.

She vowed ne'er return to the place that she came from

In that loneliest life prone to leaving her numb

Desolate empt'ness so oft found implied

Living no life—and how hard she had tried

To feel as if she might be serving a purpose

To anything to benefit from her service

Besides her cruel master whose varied abuses

Left scars of all kinds on her form he peruses

Such that she felt she might never recover.

Could one shake off the cold actions of others?

        As she was thus pondering her then state

Wond'ring what else could emerge as her fate,

Another burst suddenly into the clearing

His moaning and groaning assaulting her hearing.

Dressed head to toe in the finest of raiment

His very manners suggesting such payment

As only afforded by richest of rich

Affluence ev'dent in every fine stitch.

It took sev'ral moments in which for his eyes

To reg'ster this int'resting new girl's surprise.

He drew himself then quickly up to full height

At which his splendor couldst sparkle with light;

But long it was not until that his broad shoulders

Again sagged to the earth as if weighted by boulders.

He plopped next to her with theatrical sighs

Wiping impressive big tears from his eyes.

He drew in a breath and began quite a spate

Of which I shall now be obliged to narrate.

        “O woe is me, such a poor, sullen creature!

An one such as I is the most wretched seeker!

Living the life of a caged little bird

Any notion of independence thence deterred

By the plans of those much super'or than I

My agency forfeit in blink of the eye.

Set on a pedestal for all to see

What a quaint little pet is a boy such as me.

For 'tis boy that I am, for I'm not yet a man

As I am unable to make my own plan

A prerequisite for to my manhood achieving

I fall miserably short of just what I'm believing

That is what precisely what I deem should be

Not dictated by allof humanity

Turning my life to what they think should be

Not one of my choices is left up to me,

For I should act thus as my conscious dictates

Not to the whims of some stuffy mag'strates

Who say that in my interests they are set

When actually I know that they want to get

The best possible out of me in their favor

While flav'ring my life with the bitt'rest of flavor.

Trapped in a palace—a horrible fate!

The thickest of walls as my glamorized crate

All the day long I think how my desires

Can never come true though I feel such a fire

Burning within of my young teenage breast

To follow my heart and do what I deem best

        “Quotha! A soon-to-be-king if you will,

That is my lot in this life to fulfill,

A title that inflames in all jealousy

Though I cannot imagine for the life of me

Why anyone would such a burden seek after

A position as such that thus squeezes all laughter

And joy and contentment all out of your life

Charact'rized instead by war and by strife.

For some reason the whole world has got this strange notion

That roy'lty is nothing but easy promotion

To a wonderful world full of richest enchantment

When actually it is a mirage entrapment;

An empire's weight on your shoulders born down

Such is the difficult burden of crown

Of which it seems no other option I'm given

But to continue in arrogant living

With riches and gold and affluence and ease

Surrounded by the finest of luxuries.

But I have since come to a single conclusion

To explain my sadness though wealth in profusion

Surrounded me from the moment of birth:

That is not how you should measure true worth;

For all the gold in the world is so pointless

If the life that you live has become also meaningless.

I am told that I possess all of which to be happy

Yet inside my soul I feel utterly crappy.”

        Another big sigh and he slumped himself o'er

Letting out all of his angst-driven furor

Till fin'lly his sobs had subsided enough

To peek at the girl that at first he'd judged rough.

But a careless glance rarely ever reveals

What is inside, a true person's appeals.

Lines of hard dirt down her face had been streaking

Bidding him realize 'twas not just he seeking

Escape from the cage that his life had turned into

Till he had decided true life to pursue.

She was perfectly still and his breath she was baiting

Her posture betraying her e'er-patient waiting

For him to remember alone he was not—

There still was a person he'd almost forgot

In his scaled-up tale he had told of such woe

As if he were only the one that could show

The tragedies that this life dost oft' bring

The cruel tricks of fate that it frequently flings

At hardworking mere mortals on earth

Causing at times us to question our worth.

His shameful blue eyes, they peeked up at the girl

Through a rumpled halo of pampered blonde curls.

Prince Charming was anymore not quite so dashing

But rather as one in great need of a thrashing.

How was he to know that he, just a young lad,

Had come across one with a tale just as sad

If not more so after that all she had endured

This angel that nature had somehow procured

And placed in his way at this darkest of hours

When this young man had come so far 'way from his tow'rs.

        Isn't it funny how life has a way

Of showing us often that our own dismay

Is so, so much smaller than those who surround

Us in this confusing life to be found

At times when we think that we have it the worst,

No, sorrow to us it is never a first:

Troubles have happened since the world first was

A natural opposition here because

Learning is best received through exper'ence

Through test and trials born of heav'n's interference.

Next time that you may be feeling most blue

Think—much worse things could so happen to you!

        When finally silence enveloped around them,

Elysia gently made a small move toward him.

Rather than unleash her own tale of woe

Her personal share of untold pain and sorrow,

Instead she placed her hand gently on his,

Gave him an empathetic smile as is

Her nature within her so deeply ingrained

A trait that to him so curr’ntly pertained.

“I know how you feel.” It was all that she said

Causing understanding to replace his own dread.

He turned and gazed into those darkest of eyes

Light with compassion to his utmost surprise.

In that briefest of moments something was exchanged

Like somewhere in space fateful stars were arranged.

These two people's differences it would seem

Were too vast to e'er span the large space between

Their utterly polarly opposite lives

Stemming from the gap society implies.

But that is where it is wrong you'd be proven

For sometimes it is found as most behooven

That actually those on antipodes of the spectrum

Have equal amounts of just what may connect them.

Absolute value more nearly descries

What has been realized by wisest of wise

In that outliers are act'ally found to be equal—

Exceptions are all very similar people.

        They sat for a moment in deep contemplation

Of the incredulity that from separate station

They found in each other a fitting companion.

A conclusion with the untold power to stun

The stuffiest representatives of sovereignty

It is a shock that foresight canst not prep!

All of a sudden a breath she drew in—

He prepared himself for the fitting disc'pline.

But when she did speak he was thusly enamored

By her simplicity though his stark manners clamored

For correction that would be most deserving

Of his own selfish int'rest that he had been serving.

Instead, still she grasped his soft hand in her own

She smiled in a way that was oft' quite renown

As a look that the wise often venture to don

When preparing the deliv'ry of fitting sermon.

        “My dear fellow wanderer,” she began thus,

“It seems that fate has so far been kind to us

In placing each other in each other's way

To show one another what best to convey

That would abrade our rough patches as needed

And send us the wisdom that should now be heeded.

From this chance meeting I've reached some conclusions

Of what can be done with hard times in profusions

Which seem despite station to come forth regardless

So let me share what I now know—that is this:

That external circumstances have no pow'r

On the happiness each of us feels hour by hour.

I am a peasant, by stigma made black,

And you are a prince given all that I lack

Yet have us both felt so fully miserable

Each of our lives rendered bleak and so dismal.

Thus so it is you have proven to me

That riches cannot ever quite guarantee

That you will be happy or carefree or true

To what you have deemed to be most of virtue.

        “Happiness, my heart now largely discovers

Is subject to blessings a person uncovers.

No matter what may be their hard lot in life,

One always can always find better than strife.

Possessions possess such irrelevancy

Upon what I find to be most dear to me.

It is your opinion, your own divine right,

To insure that your pathway is ever so bright.

To each person God has entrusted so fully

The most priceless gift in the form of their agency

To extract from their life just what they all may—

The choice is all mine at the end of the day

Just what I will do with the things I've been given.

Shall I choose to be selfishly driven?

Or shall I try to help others in need

Even when my own self I can't feed?

From this day forward I will live diff'rent

Helping others find all that is heaven-sent,

To extract from life just what it can give

And find that in happiness they too can live.

And all of a sudden thus it is that I see

Only I can decide whether or not I truly am free!

        All at once she fell silent, a new smile on her face,

Content now that she had discovered her place

In a world of confusion, anguish and strife

She was now ready to begin a new life.

But what she was unprepared for now came after—

From the prince's own throat came the soft sound of laughter.

And then he leaned over and her cracked lips he kissed

And suddenly realized just all he had missed.

In sullenly stumbling from one day to the next

He had been selfly deprived of the best

That life had to offer to those who dared seek

Brightness of hope when all seemed most bleak.

Her utter surprise across her face showed

That she would never have suspected what followed.

        “My dear newfound angel,” was how he began,

“Your kindness had shown me an inspired plan,

A way that I can live good and right

A course more courageous than cowardly flight.

I have decided once I have returned

To where I have come I'll tell what I've learned

From the very smartest of girls among women,

That I also endeavor that I for to help them in

Doing just what it is that to me you have taught

Giving me everything I had sought.

And now, one last thing, if you'll stoop to this favor

I would be pleased if you'd do me the honor

Of accepting my hand that I offer to you

And pledge that to me you will always be true.

It seems to me, truly happy I canst not be

Without you, the one who just so completes me:

She who has proven my other half

The one I to which I can cry, and also laugh.

You are the most beaut'ful of creatures I've ever

Had occasion to behold and to me all the treasure

That I could ever possess could never compare

With you being my wife, though I know it's not fair

To ask such a princess as I know you to be

To make her way through life stuck with me.”

        Eliza looked at him through heav'ly veiled eyes

Doing her best at containing surprise.

But finally she could no longer contain it:

She laughed—how could she further restrain it?

Life had turned upside down once again

Sending her reeling with another hard spin.

She stood and looked down on his most anxious face

Inwardly smiling at his current disgrace.

She curtsied and then she theatrically said,

“There is no other to whom I'd rather be wed

Than you, who has taught me the most important lesson

Saving me from any further transgression.”

He jumped and threw his arms 'round her figure

So ecstatic to be rightly there with her

The girl who only mere minutes before

Had been just a stranger, someone else to abhor.

        And now, faithful listener, it is your turn

To decide just what you can learn

From this clichéd moral-filled tale

Regardless of from where it is that you hail

I'm sure you are ready to be done with these rhymes

Though bad they may be, they apply to all times.

Materials are ever so insignificant

To what is important right here in the present.

Contentment derives not from possessions

But rather from virtue and moral discretions.

As the saying goes, when most are dying,

“More time in the office!” is not what they're crying.

Hold onto your values and what is most dear,

You loved ones and actions, and it will be clear

Just what your own priorities should be.

Through love it is thus we can all be set free.


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