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Daily Archives: June 22, 2013

I Am a Teacher

A student gave me this poem Thursday. The Alberta Teachers Association published it in their monthly newspaper recently. Susan Holland, a retiring teacher, wrote it. Is there such a thing as a retiring teacher?

The poem encapsulates many of my current feelings and points to the impact we have on children and families. The gesture of giving me the poem is deeply meaningful and I am grateful to receive and share it.

I Am a Teacher

You are my children.

We triumph together when you master cursive.

We struggle through long division.

I wipe away your tears when something bruises you elbow

Or someone bruises your heart.

You read to me—I read to you.

We laugh over silly jokes or stories.

I introduce you to new words—

You refresh me with new perspectives.

I wasn’t there when you were born.

I don’t tuck you in at night …

Or dance at your wedding.

But, you are my children.

And as June draws to a close

I grow melancholy.

You will move on and I will stay behind to start again.

And as the years pass you blend, merge, and mingle—

Warp and weft intertwined into my universal child.

I am a teacher.

You are the fabric of my life.

 

MATTHEW – POSTSCRIPT

I posted this poem some time ago, but Simon explains why we keep coming back to Mary Oliver and her beautiful poetry over and over. For that matter, it is why we come back to poetry or the writings of people like Parker Palmer, Thomas Merton, and Thich Nhat Hanh who incorporate poetry in their prose.

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