05 October 2016

Teachers in Natural Environments

Panoramic 360° view of Joshua Tree Park

Hold Still and Listen, shhhh, commanded she,
the tree.  Surprised, I complied then and now
again.  No curt command before or since
brought me such fear and joy as submitting
to trees.  I see they’re here and there in cities, too,
for those who listen.  Do deserts absent
of trees instill the same dear awe?  I ask
students to speak of early learning they
recall.  And they answer with buildings, streets
and trash, the sounds of bullets, bombs and screams—
the feel of running and crumpling down—
a natural environment of man.
They silence me and we exchange the look
of wise too young.  We learn outside the book.

For my prompt 

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Teaching

My blog poems are rough drafts.
Please respect my copyright.
© 2016 Susan L. Chast


thotpurge said...

learn outside the book...wonderfully said.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

WOW!!!!!! My new fave!!!!!!! I LOVE it! Love the exchanging of "the look of wise too young", and oh how we "learn outside the book." Do we ever!!!!!

annell4 said...

A sad story indeed, children too wise, too young, all learned outside the book.

Anonymous said...

What a well composed work in one's feelings. We are brought to a crescendo, then peace.

Old Egg said...

Schools which should (but don't) prepare us for the world do fail in that respect. Parents too protect their children from the truth and only when a first job is sought does the advice come "It's a hard world out there". Luckily I was child in wartime in fear and shortage so that certainly helped. Great post Susan.

Mary said...

It is very sad when children speak of the sounds of bullets, bombs, and screams. Far too many grow up with these, I think. Much better to concentrate on the trees.

purplepeninportland.com said...

Outside the book, or tree, knowledge can be a scary reality. Wonderful poem!

Sumana Roy said...

so sad...i pray for the day when they'll learn and of course outside the book to submit to a tree...

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Learning outside of the book. The difference between learning and education.

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Love that last thought: "We learn outside the book." Even though I have a master's degree, I believe that the things I have learned best happened outside the classroom.

rudraprayaga said...

True we learn more outside the book.Nicely versed.

Intelliblog said...

Such a wonderful appreciation of the ultimate teacher - Nature! Well-penned, Susan.