Today a young man came to school.
No big deal…
That happens every day…
That’s where he should be…
…is not an average kid
…has behavior issues
…is average. If average is high-risk.
…you ask (shrugging your shoulders).
Today a young man came to school
and he inspired me.
He came in…
…completely out of dress code
…and after walking maybe 3 miles toward
Nashville and turning around
and coming to school.
Not home, to school.
Where he felt safe.
An alternative program
where he had been for about 3 weeks
I spoke to him as he came to my class.
Asking if he…
…was going to be able to work
…would be any trouble
His voice – it broke as he responded.
And my heart – it broke as I listened.
You could hear…
…in his voice.
He looked like a cornered animal.
He reacted like an abused dog to attention.
I told him…
…he made a good choice coming to school
(not the myriad other choices he could have made)
…some days we must focus on the small, minute-to-minute decisions
(not the big decisions)
…some days we rejoice at getting through it step-by-step
…that I enjoyed having him in class because he works hard
…I was proud of him for making the right decisions this day
…I had faith in him and knew he could keep it up
He came in and worked hard
At the end of the day he left…
…with a smile
…shaking hands with teachers
I hope he returns tomorrow. He said he’s moving to Nashville.
I never tell my students I’ll miss them…
…but I do.
Today a young man came to school…
…he didn’t have to, but he did
…and he inspired me
…and he taught me
My father wrote this poem many years ago. It won 2nd place in a nationwide contest sponsored by Parade Magazine in 1993 as I recall. I hope you like it as much as I do. My father passed away two weeks ago on August 1st, 2014.
Tomorrow, my tomorrow
whatever will you bring.
A broken heart to cry o’er
or perhaps a song to sing.
Will you hurt me then desert me
and leave my soul to ache
or will you love me lightly
and a lifetime for me make.
Tomorrow, my tomorrow
love me lightly
please I plea,
For I have cried o’er all
that were ever meant to be.
Tom A. Turner
Aug 24, 1942 – Aug 1, 2014
Poet, artist, woodworker, father, husband
This is the first blog I will recommend to others.
My daughter has a blog. And it’s better than mine. She’s eleven. She writes wonderfully, very creative. She has good organization and great logic in her structure. Yes, I’m bias. But even as a critic I would still appreciate her effort and her style. There are certainly some things she can and will improve on as time goes on. Grammar is naturally a problem but she is only eleven. I’m looking forward to reading more of her posts and hopefully seeing her grow through writing. She’s the kind of girl every teacher would want in the classroom, except that she tends to be very quiet and hates to ask questions. She shows a very mature, subtle sense of humor – but she will emphatically tell you she’s not funny! But she is – in a good way not a way that would embarrass her.
Her aspirations? Her immediate goal is to be in all advanced 7th grade classes and receive multiple academic awards at the end of next year (she received one academic award this year – English Language Arts). Her medium range goal is to be accepted into Harvard University and her long range goal is to be an ER surgeon. She has a heart of gold and super sweet. She’s a perfectionist and very goal-oriented. She’s super creative and enjoys painting and making jewelry. Check her out. Leave her a comment. Encourage her.
The name of her blog is actually “No, It’s Aimee” (it reflects on the spelling of her name. She thought of it, no one else helped her. Right now the name of her blog is “I am a princess, every girl is…” But that’s my fault. I’ve not helped photoshop her a new blog header. Anyway, here’s the link.