Schooled

You see, they taught me that to escape

was a sign of weakness.

Tough it out, bear it,

deal with it.

Don’t be a wimp.

But some contracts are signed too quickly

and the fine print reveals

conditions too onerous,

designed to beat down the spirit,

to enslave and stamp out inner fires.

And sometimes someone else signs for you.

Our civilization is like that,

rolling over entire cultures

with this crushing domination.

Schools were designed to wipe that smile

right off your face,

to make you sit without squirming,

to move you with bells

and fierce, loveless admonitions.

Rewarding you for fulfilling

the contract that makes you a good little citizen.

Look for the loophole!

Find the narrow window and squeeze through!

Pick the lock!

And then double back and help the others

who have been squeezed like lemons:

dried up, hopeless rinds.

Bring them water.

Give them the silent space

to find their strength

away from the bells, the little desks,

the rewards for knowing false things

and the punishment for being real.

Inspired by The Daily Word Prompt: loophole

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Published by

Victoria Stuart

I'm a poet, philosopher and inner seeker. A giver, lover and a healer who studies the heart.

15 thoughts on “Schooled”

  1. This is painfully relatable. I was a “good student,” but only because I was terrified to get a wrong answer. My favorite part is:
    “But some contracts are signed too quickly
    and the fine print reveals
    conditions too onerous, …
    And sometimes someone else signs for you.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, thank you. I wonder if that is the case for all the good students, we were so terrified of being wrong that we focused all of our energy on being the most right. Sigh. Thanks for reading and reflecting. I appreciate your feedback.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Very good piece! We are all made out of ticky tacky and we all look just the same! Heaven help us all!! Where has our imagination gone. I see this all the time on TV. They are having to bring back old sitcom to find any real creativity!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This piece of yours is profoundly sad because there is no end in sight. Yes, there are alternative paths on the margins as there always have and will be, but eventually we all find that at some point, “And sometimes someone else signs for you.” We should make that unacceptable. Null and void. Thanks, Victoria.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for reading and the reflection. I really resonate with the power of bringing what is hidden into visibility. It feels that the most dangerous things which repeat themselves are the ones we don’t acknowledge. (My favorite fairytale is The Emperor Has No Clothes!)

      Like

  4. Schools as an extension of factory life, you have documented that well: Schools were designed to wipe that smile
    right off your face,
    to make you sit without squirming,
    to move you with bells.
    Really well put. And now kids are even drugged to keep them in their chairs.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow! Excellent writing here….but I do hope the schools of today have improved over yesterday’s. I hope there is more room for imagination….although this world of nationalized “testing” seems to have boxed that in even more.

    Liked by 1 person

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