Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Little Red Wheelbarrow in the room

Late night.
New Year.
Semester drawing to a close
So many worries.

Okay-I felt poetic. I like English. I like words. If I had my druthers I would work with the English Department- but the job available when I was desperate to move on was a special service teacher strong in math and science. I already said I was desperate to get away from my old school. I developed a spontaneous strength for math and science. So I spend my days solving equations and talking about cells dividing.

But the English coach was late for sixth period open resource room and David was waiting for assistance. What stands between David and a high diploma is passing the English Regents. David has been faithfully coming for coaching and I listen the background or our little crowded room.

In a school full of noise, David is a quiet island in stream of continuous commentary- complaints, cries and cursing.

So I grab the poetry anthology and thumb to William Carlos William's "The Red Wheelbarrow" four verses, four words per verses- not much of a diversion into the world of literature- while we wait for the coach. And we try to figure out what it all means. Of course five minutes into to this I'm wondering if I know what it all means.

"It's setting is outside," David begins. I press him to say more.
"Water," he adds. "Maybe a farm, there are chickens."

And the English coach returns and wants to know what the connection between water and the farm is, and why glazed?

And what's the theme? Or significance?
Sixteen words, so many questions.

And then Quentin arrives. What stands between Quentin and the diploma is the Math Regents. So we take out the papers and start substituting y's for x's and using the inverse operation and there it is neatly on the paper- the answer- no wondering or uncertainty.

Maybe I'm grateful the English position wasn't available.

New year,
So many tests
So many worries
In our little crowded room

1 comment:

  1. I think I'd be a loss for William Carlos Williams, too, and I minored in Literature. Good luck to David.