Tag Archives: education

A Distant Shout

A distant shout
As children lark about
In the playground.

A happy sound.
Though many a fool
Does romanticise school

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An Ordinary Girl

The paper is peeling
And the ceiling
Is dirty grey.
“How long will you stay?”
He asks. “What will you pay?”
I say.
Shall I be nice
And offer him a lower price?

Its so easy to pretend
To be “a friend”
When you’ve done this for a while.
You smile
And lose yourself in drink
Or think
Of Coins
And gird your loins.

Having wrangled
I lie
Entangled
In the sheet.
“You are sweet”
I say,
Thinking of my pay.

Me in jeans
On the bus, with my university books.
No one looks
At an ordinary girl,
Her head in a whirl
Over forthcoming exams,
And last night’s scenes.

Don’t Major In Literature

A highly provocative take on the value of studying literature, which can be summed up by the following quote from the post linked to below:

… “and if you want to learn about art, beauty, and literary value—read great writers and do nothing more than open yourself to them. Don’t pay
and don’t let your parents mortgage their home to have your aesthetic sensibilities ruined and replaced by a hodgepodge pseudo discipline”.

The article is, I believe full of sweeping generalisations (and I certainly don’t agree with the suggestion that literature departments should, perhaps be closed). I am sharing in the spirit of encouraging debate and my re-blogging should not necessarily be taken as signifying my agreement with the writer’s perspective.

To read the article please visit, http://quillette.com/2017/05/02/dont-major-literature/.

Public Property

Being blind and a guide dog owner, the following post struck a chord with me (http://viscourse.blogspot.co.uk/2016/09/public-property.html). In it, Deborah, a visually impaired guide dog owner, describes how a lady interrupted her conversation with a friend in order to ask whether she could pet Deborah’s guide dog. When Deborah said “no” the interrupter left in a huff, which to me is remarkable given that she had rudely interposed in a conversation in order to gratify her desire to pet Deborah’s (working) guide dog.
I, like Deborah find that unthinking people regard visually impaired individuals as public property. The worst instance I can recall of this occurred some time ago. I was crossing a busy road when a gentleman began stroking my guide dog, Trigger in the midst of stationary vehicles! On other occasions people have asked me deeply personal questions regarding my relationship status. Such enquiries would not have been addressed to a non-disabled person, yet those posing them think it is acceptable to ask whether I have dated disabled or non-disabled women.
I recognise the importance of educating people and am usually happy to answer questions provided they are sensitively phrased and put in a respectful manner. I am also delighted for people to say hello to Trigger but only when they ask politely and by so doing they don’t put my safety and that of Trigger in danger.
Noone, whether disabled or non-disabled should be considered as public property.

Kevin

School Days

I recall The library’s high shelves
Where I would delve
For books.
Often I forsook
My peers
To read
And on solitude feed.

All those years
Gone by.
I sigh
And wonder why
The past holds such sway.
And we humans lose ourselves in yesterday.
Oh how easy it is to perspective lack
As we gaze back
Down childhood’s track.

I remember the schoolyard’s din
And the wanting to join in.
Sometimes I ran with the crowd
Yet my nature proud
Held me apart
And I solace found in art.

I see the library now
And wonder how
The school goes on
Now that I am gone
An whether books still stand
Waiting to command
The future poet’s hand.

“The Invigilator” by Jayne King

Thank you to Jayne King for her poem, “The invigilator”. The below poem is copyright Jayne King and may not be reproduced without the explicit written permission of Jayne King.

Being an invigilator,
Is there anything more boring?
Scanning the hall.
Toing and froing.

Trying to be alert,
So I can respond quickly to a raised hand.
Wishing I could sit like the others.
But instead, having to stand.

How slowly the time passes,
Seemingly standing still.
There’s movement all around me,
But somehow the time stays still.

Seconds turn to minutes,
A minute lasts an hour.
Some students offer small, tired smiles,
Others just sit and glower.