Tuesday, August 27, 2013


               I think most of us at some time during our early years have had a teacher that has inspired us.  That special person embedded  in our memory bank that stood out as encouraging and real. Someone who went that one step further to make us want to learn.
               A friend told me the story of such a person.  A brilliant math teacher who later developed Alzheimer's and was known to 'wander away' from home and get into some odd predicaments.  She later had to be placed in a care home.  This poem that is influenced from my friends memory can't help but be tinged with sadness.  Or is it?  


        Miss Betsy Love spends all her time 
        in the lower pasture
        she squats to pee by the sun drenched stump 
        of a rotting oak
        mice tickle her toes
        scamper under her skirt and chuckle
        she dips ripe berries in the crested brook
        sucks fresh fallen fruit
        smiles that rusted smile of happiness
        Miss Betsy Love no longer trusts the numbers
        old chalk dust memories
        circle her mornings like spiders
        so she measures her days and the pressure of
        at Gorman falls
        the slant of the sun in late August
        she lies herself down in the afternoon rain
        to study the bellies of sheep
        and the earth
        like the bottom of and old wooden bucket
        Miss Betsy Love can't do the math
        if you take one life and divide it up
        she comes up with a number hard to believe
        as she claws through the brush and speaks to
        the wind
        the blood on her skin becomes crusted and dry 
        and she knows that somewhere
        people are counting
        counting her days 
 poem by annie

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