Friday, September 1, 2017

Poetry Friday: September???? September!!!!!

It's September. Quick, kids, forget about somersaulting off the dock into the icy lake water. Quick, teachers, forget about sitting in the sunshine doing absolutely nothing. Get up, get dressed, all of you, put on your First Day clothes, go to school.

Here is a school-ish poem - at least, it's about getting an education - from the wonderful poet Mary Ruefle. You can find it in her book, Post Meridian. Happy Poetry Friday!

Sentimental Education

Ann Galbraith
loves Barry Soyers.

Please pray for Lucius Fenn
who suffers greatly whilst shaking hands.

Bonny Polton
loves a pug named Cowl.

Please pray for Olina Korsk
who holds the record for missing fingers.

Leon Bendrix loves Odelia Jonson
who loves Kurt who loves Carlos who loves Paul.

Please pray for Cortland Filby
who handles a dead wasp, a conceit for his mother.

Harold loves looking at Londa’s hair under the microscope.
Londa loves plaiting the mane of her pony.

Please pray for Fancy Dancer
who is troubled by the vibrissa in his nostrils.

Nadine St. Clair loves Ogden Smythe
who loves blowing his nose on postage stamps.

Please pray for William Shakespeare
who does not know how much we love him, miss him and think of him.

Yukiko Pearl loves the little bits of toffee
that fall to the floor when Jeffrey is done with his snack.

Please pray for the florist Marieko
who wraps roses in a paper cone then punches the wrong code.

Muriel Frame loves retelling the incident
that happened on the afternoon of November third.
Please pray for our teacher Ursula Twombly
who does not know the half of it.

By the radiator in a wooden chair
wearing woolen stockings sits a little girl
in a dunce’s cap, a paper cone rolled to a point
and inverted on her hair; she’s got her hands
in her lap and her head bowed down, her chin
is trembling with having been singled out like this
and she is sincere in her fervent wish to die.

Take it away and give it to the Tartars
who roll gloriously into battle.

                                             Mary Ruefle

I've also posted my thoughts about the tick-tock of the school clock over at Books Around the Table.
And Poetry Friday is being hosted by Kathryn Apel, Aussie Children's Writer. Head over to her blog to see what other people have posted. 


  1. Hard to tell if this is all one class or memories, yet when I hear my granddaughters speak of new classmates, this is the kind of thing they notice, except for the dunce cap, of course. Fun to read Julie!

  2. It's a little strange, but so are memories. And poets. And kids. And school. :-) I love the line about Shakespeare!

  3. Ha! Teachers NEVER know the half of what's going on behind and underneath and inside the teaching we're trying to accomplish!

    1. Teaching is a noble, enriching profession - also, occasionally humbling or downright confusing, right?

  4. What a fun poem! Good luck to all of those heading back to school.

    1. Thanks, Kay! And yes, luck to all headed off to school.

  5. What fun. Ending on war, just as so many of kids' games do.

    1. You're right, Brenda - I hadn't really thought of that, just thought "Right, there we go, the ubiquitous battlefield." But kids' games - yes - often battle-oriented. Great observation.