Friday, September 11, 2009

teacher's dream

A persisting dream of being late
to teach a class has in recent
months given way to dreams
of getting there (though a
related dream of losing
items of value came up recently
with one of its most cunning
variations -- in this one I couldn't
find where I'd parked my car so
was roaming all over the place
searching for it, driving IN MY CAR).

Dreams, occasions for contemplation.

Here's a poem that tried to catch
the spirit of the late-teacher motif:


Oh no, not again, yes, here it comes,
another go at The Dream with its tons
of gothic buildings to wander through.

I'm late to teach, can't find the classroom...
couldn't I pick up a dream for once
where I'm early, ready, in the zone?

But wait, she's phoning for info, Ms. Hope,
English Department Secretary,
oh thank you, thank you, Precious One,

for she's got the room number, but speaking too fast,
I'd better jot down directions but can't
find a pencil and every scrap of paper's

filled with English Department words
margin to margin -- insanely late
and can you believe it? that's when they hit

the freeze frame on me, movie's over,
me in a frenzy from knowing (somehow)
that three dogged students grow old hanging on

in the old-fashioned classroom with yellowy shades
pulled low, and of course I understand
this dream, not hard to interpret, just

the story of my life: how
to get there get there help me to get there
before they've all gone away.