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" They're chasing me, they're chasing, no they must not catch me, I have enough money now, yes enough for my starving mother and brothers. Please let me go, let me go home before you imprisoned me. Very well, officers? take me to your headquarters. Good morning captain! no captain, you are mistaken, I was once a good girl, just like the rest of you here. Just like any of your daughters. But time was, when I was reared in slums. But we lived honestly, we lived honestly in life. My, father, mother, brothers, sisters and I. But then, poverty enters the portals of our home. My father became jobless, my mother got ill. The small savings that my mother had kept for our expenses were spent. All for our daily needs and her needed medicine. One night, my father went out, telling us that he would come back in a few minutes with plenty of foods and money, but that was the last time I saw him. He went with another woman. If only I could lay my hands on his neck I would wring it without pain until he breaths no more. If you were in my place, you'll do it, won't you Captain? What? you won't still believe in me?. Come and I'll show you a dilapidated shanty by a railroad. Mother, mother I'm home, mother? mother?!. There Captain, see my dead mother. Captain? there are tears in your eyes? now pack this stolen money and return it to the owner. What good would this do to my mother now? she's already gone! Do you hear me? she's already gone. Am I to be blamed for the things I have done? "JUVENILE DELINQUENT" Am I a juvenile delinquent? I'm a teenager, I'm young, young at heart in mind. In this position, I'm carefree, I enjoy doing nothing but to drink the wine of pleasure. I seldom go to school, nobody cares!. But instead you can see me roaming around. Standing at the nearby canto (street). Or else standing beside a jukebox stand playing the nerve tickling bugaloo.Those are the reasons, why people, you branded me delinquent, a juvenile delinquent. My parents ignored me, my teachers sneered at me and my friends, they neglected me. One night I asked my mother to teach me how to appreciate the values in life. Would you care what she told me? "Stop bothering me! Can't you see? I had to dress up for my mahjong session, some other time my child". I turned to my father to console me, but, what a wonderful thing he told me. "Child, here's 500 bucks, get it and enjou yourself, go and ask your teachers that question". And in school, I heard nothing but the echoes of the voices of my teachers torturing me with these words. "Why waste your time in studying, you can't even divide 100 by 5! Go home and plant sweet potatoes".
I may have the looks of Audrey Hepburn, the calmly voice of Nathalie Cole. But that's not what you can see in me. Here's a young girl who needs counsel to enlighten her way and guidance to strenghten her life into contentment. Honorable judge, friends and teachers...is this the girl whom you commented a juvenile delinquent?.
“I Demand Death!”
My hands are wet with blood. They are crimsoned with the blood of a man I have just killed. I have come here today to confess. I have committed murder, deliberate, premeditated murder. I have killed a man in cold blood. That man is my master. I am here not to ask for pity but for justice. Simple, elementary justice. I am a tenant… My father was a tenant before me and so was his father before him. This misery is my inheritance and perhaps this will be my legacy to my children. I have labored on a patch of land not mine. But I have learned to love that land, for it is the only thing that lies between me and complete destitution. It is the only world that I have learned to cherish. And somewhere on that land I have managed to build what is now the dilapidated nipa shack that has been home to me. I have but a few world possessions, mostly rags. My debts are heavy. They are sum total of my ignorance and the inspired arithmetic of my master, which I do not understand. I labor like a slave and out of the fruits of that labor I get but a mere pittance for a share. And I have to stretch that mere pittance to keep myself and my family alive. My poverty has reduced me to the bare necessities of life. And the constant fear of rejection from the land has made me totally subservient to my master. You tell me that under the constitution, I am a free man-free to do what I believe is just, free to do what I think is right, and free to worship God according to the dictate of my conscience. But I do not understand the meaning of all these for I have never known freedom. I have always obeyed the wishes of my master out of fear. I have always regarded myself as no better than a slave to the man who owns the land on which I live. I do not ask you to forgive me nor to mitigate my crime. I have taken the law into my own hands, and I must pay for it in atonement. But kill this system. Kill this system and you kill despotism. Kill this system and you kill slavery. Kill this despotism and you set the human soul to liberty and freedom. Kill this slavery and you release the human spirit into happiness and contentment. For the cause of human liberty, of human happiness and contentment, thousands and even millions have died and will continue to die. Mine is only one life. Take me if you must but let it be a sacrifice to the cause which countless others have been given before and will be given again and again, until the oppressive economic system has completely perished, until the sons of toil have been
You will always be my best mother in the world. Later on. You tell me of the right to life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness. please listen to me. I have known no happiness. I demand death. I have nothing but love for my fellowmen. To this oppression that has denied liberty to the free and unbounded children of God. But I have known no rights." I whispered. these hands that give life to many. listen to my story before you give my verdict. My mother had a burning faith that she turned the nights into days. only despair in the encumbered existence that has always been my lot.liberated from enslavement. My mother who had given her whole life to me had tears in her eyes as she pinned the gold medal on my proud breast. and I.. I was born in a slum district of Batalon. and until man has been fully restored to decency and self respect. My dear friend. My dear friend: I do anguish from the weak and helpless and has laid upon the back of the ignorant labor burdens that are too heavy to be borne. I am a peace-loving citizen. a slave. I was nourished with hope that someday I might live a life different from her. My mother brought me up in such determination and my ambition was to escape the filthy and horrible place of Batalon.. And yet. only obligations. mother. I demand death! To this callous system of exploitation that has tightened the fetters of perpetual bondage in the hands of thousands. I want to blow that spelled the death of my master to be a death blow to the institution of the economic slavery which shamelessly exists in the bright sunlight of freedom that is guaranteed by the constitution to every man. All her efforts were not in vain for I pushed through with flying colors. and has killed the spirit of freedom in the hearts of men. I am Dr. a master. Ladies and Gentlemen of this honorable court. . a cancer specialist. Reyes. These hands. I committed the murder as an abject lesson."Mother. I could no longer suffer the thought of being perpetually a slave.. I embraced my mother… tightly as I've reached the plane…. I was sent as a scholar of the Philippines to the United States of America. I DEMAND DEATH! I KILLED HER I killed her because I do love her. My father oh! I don't know him for I am a child of faith. killed her because of my love to her. Out of a deliberate design I killed him because I could no longer stand this life of constant fear and being a servant. why did I kill this man? It is because he was the symbol of an economic system which has made him and me what we are: He.
mother…. It was only a distilled water…. Punish me……… GO.. Then one night. it was only distilled water which ended the sufferings of my mother. if you love me. I came back with laurels. Don't leave. " Yes. "Where did it come from?" someone said. "The wind has blown it in." God…. Judge me…. he smiled as tho' he thought he'd struck the proper place. forgive me…. I heard a strange cry. as I embrace her. I run to her room. Ladies and Gentlemen. I gave the best treatment but the grasp of death was so tight around her. Toby. "Mother. Thy will be done!!! The Face Upon the Floor." "But. In fact.. Yes. child?"… she asked. what is the use of ten years of study if I couldn't even use it at my mother's pain. I gave my mother everything but I was too late. mother. punish me………….. kill me… Let me die. please understand me…. or rum or gin?" "Here. I promise to give life and not to end it. She deserves to be happy. Which well-nigh filled Joe's barroom.. if your stomach's equal to the work-I wouldn't touch him with a fork. on the corner of the square. give me your verdict. MOTHER……" Now.. (author: Hugh Antoine D'Arcy) 'Twas a balmy summer evening and a goodly crowd was there. And as songs and witty stories Came through the open door. I love you." This badinage the poor wretch took with stoical good grace.. "Do you love me. My God." "Mother. came too late to the life of my dying mother. I who had used to ease the pain of many. A vagabond crept slowly in and posed upon the floor." "What does it want?" another cried.After four years. end my sufferings. I run to my room and came back with a syringe.. She did not deserve the unhappiness.. . "Some whiskey. sic 'em. he's filthy as a Turk.Mother…… Mother……. mother. God. If only I could get all your pain and agonies…" " Then…. I became a cancer specialist. you must not die….
here's luck. "You've treated me pretty kindly and I'd like to tell you true How I came to be the dirty sot. Say! Give me another whiskey and I'll tell you what I'll do. Say. and for a month or two. 'tis called the 'Chase of Fame'. I'll make another call. Joe. "Boys.. thanks. did you ever see a girl for whom your soul you'd give. you know. her smiles were freely given. "Fill her up. That I was ever a decent man not one of you would think. I know there's kindly hearts among so good a crowd-To be in such good company would make a deacon proud. And but for a blunder ought to have made. I promise.. For gradually I saw the star of fame before my eyes. With eyes that would beat the Koh-i-noor and a wealth of chestnut hair? . and for my age.. God bless you one and all. I worked hard at my canvas and was bidding fair to rise. considerable wealth. And when her loving lips touched mine."Come. some four or five years back. With a form like the Milo Venus. once I was a man. What? You laugh as if you thought this pocket never held a sou. I'm out of funds. it carried me to Heaven. that's the scheme. And then I met a woman. It brought me fifteen hundred pounds and added to my name. "I'll tell you a funny story. "I made a picture perhaps you've seen. I can't do that... my boys. Five fingers.. as any one of you. frame. now comes the funny part-With eyes that petrified my brain and sunk into my heart.. and a fact. Next time I pass this good saloon. I want to put some life into my frame-Such little drinks to a bum like me are miserably tame. my best regards to you. boys. too beautiful to live. Give you a song? No.. too. When I had cash to treat the gang this hand was never slow. "Give me a drink--that's what I want. not one that daubed on bricks and wood. "There. my throat's worn out and my lungs are going fast. and health. Well. As I told you. was rated pretty good. you see before you now. there. with muscle. My voice is cracked. that's braced me nicely.. too. But an artist.. my singing days are past. "I was a painter. I once was fixed as well. and corking whiskey. But I was.. boys and landlord. give me another drink. "Why don't you laugh? 'tis funny that the vagabond you see Could ever love a woman and expect her love for me. But 'twas so..
Or the selfish hope of a season’s fame. boys. what's the matter. The gatling’s jammed and the colonel dead. Then. laugh like me 'tis only babes and women that should cry.. and Honor a name. With a fearful shriek. I never see you smile. And I'll draw right here a picture of the face that drove me mad. Said she'd like to know the man. The river of death has brimmed his banks. Come. as he placed another lock upon the shapely head.. And it’s not for the sake of a ribboned coat. And England’s far. why.. who lived across the way. Of a fair-haired boy. Give me that piece of chalk with which you mark the baseball score You shall see the lovely Madeline upon the barroom floor. Why. But his captain’s hand on his shoulder smote: “Play up! Play up! And play the game!” The sand of the desert is sodden red. friend?.. dead! The Torch of Life There’s a breathless hush in the close tonight: Ten to make and the match to win – A bumping pitch and a blinding light. "I was working on a portrait. one afternoon in May." Another drink. An hour to play and the last man in. if you give me just another whiskey I'll be glad. for there never was.If so. That's why I took to drink. The jewel I had treasured so had tarnished and was dead. boys. he leaped and fell across the picture. "Say. And ere a year of misery had passed above my head. the vagabond began To sketch a face that well might buy. that had such dreamy eyes. And the regiment blind with dust and smoke. "It didn't take long to know him and before the month had flown My friend had stole my darling. another half so fair. 'twas she. there's a tear-drop in your eye. Red with the wreck of a square that broke. a friend of mine. I thought you'd be amused and laughing all the while. and with chalk in hand. . the soul of any man. and I was left alone. And Madeline admired it and much to my surprise.
It is raining. Bear through life like a torch in flame. Every one of her sons must hear. That’s where I’d like to be in the rain. cars. While in her place the school is set. drop. drop. and all. the chickens. And makes the little birds hide from the rain. Around on every side – where it wets the farmers. buses. drop. the cows. That’s where I’d like to be. the barns. both little and big. the pig.But the voice of a Schoolboy rallies the ranks: “Play up! Play up! And play the game!” This is the word that year by year. Where would you like to be in the rain? Where would you like to be? I’d like to be in a tall tree top Where the rain comes dripping drop. And falling fling to the host behind: “Play up! Play up! And play the game!” It Is Raining It is raining. Where would you like to be in the rain? Where would you like to be? I’d like to be on a city street Where the rain comes driving down Trying to make things neat As it washes the houses. It is raining. Where it batters and beats on a field of grain. And none that hears it dare forget. roof and wall The taxis. This they all with a joyful mind. Where would you like to be in the rain? Where would you like to be? I’d like to be on a ship at sea Where everything’s wet as can be And the waves are rolling high Where sailors are pulling the ropes and singing . That’s where I’d like to be in the rain That’s where I’d like to be.
That’s where I’d like to be. skimming ship at sea. I’m sorry to say. That you have been charged today By your town baker who said. My mother is sick and lying in bed. Five Loaves of Bread She stood at the bar of justice A frightened creature wan and wild— In form too small for a woman. “And your age?” asked the judge again. In feature too old for a child. What could I do to save them from death? I myself was losing my breath— So I took the five loaves of bread. That you stole five loaves of bread Do you know that stealing is bad? And that you have displeased our God? Do you know that you could be jailed? And cannot be set free or bailed?” “Your Honor. “I’ve turned fifteen. But fate’s unkind. Sir. They asked for food with eyes full of tears. That’s where I’d like to be in the rain. Then girl replied. But I’ll pay with services instead. my father is dead.And winds in the rigging and salt’s sprays stinging And round us sea gulls cry On a dipping. I know it was wrong.” said the girl. For a look so worn and pathetic Was stamped on her lovely face It seemed that years of suffering Was something time couldn’t erase.” . But day in and out I walked along Looking for work so I could earn Even hard jobs.” “Well Anna. I’m willing to learn. My brothers and sisters missed six meals. “Your name?” asked the judge as he eyed her. “Is Anna Ruiz.
or they may stroll the malls (Sy's Mall. They come here for only one reason. Indeed. except the wealthy who have their own sedans. Ayala's Mall. For the past three years. Sorry.com/tag/short-declamation-piece/page/2/ The man with the face of heaven I used to think neighbors come to my house only because they need something from me. Otherwise. you will never have it. they also need to have their pocket money. they need to have money for transportation. et al). I was not hit by posporous gas Israilites rain on the suspected Hamas militants in Gaza. nor to have someone listen to and help them solve their domestic or international problems. They heaved a sigh and tried to pray. The baker stood up and told the judge “Your Honor. Gokongwei's Mall. No. To see a hunk (translation: handsome and sexy guy). the working district of Pasig (Ortigas). Aside from that.There was silence in the courtroom. No. But they do not come here to borrow or beg for money.takdangaralin. All dug into their pockets. you must be demanding for a discription. And then brought out their wallets Sounds were heard of golden coins that fall Into boxes passed around the hall. I have no scar in the form of letter Z on my forehead. I’m withdrawing my charge. People do get hungry not just for beautiful things or human beings to look at. let me correct that. The women wiped their tears away. I am just another ordinary guy with an extraordinary look. They come her to see my face. They come to see me. I do not have a face shattered by bazoka.” A rich lady gave Anna a job That helped her and all that she loved. Of course. even the Muslim militants who kidnapped the Red Cross volunteers will also kidnap me thinking I have millions simply because I have so much fan from around the world. neither to borrow carpentry or garden tools. To get there. neighbors have been coming and going out of our house. they do. my neighbors need to either stroll the commercial capital of Manila (Makati). they get hungry for the basic reason that they need food--don't you know that? . http://www. That was suddenly filled with gloom.
I am glad my neighbors respect a little of what is left of my privacy. I am sure you have heard about me and been looking for my location for a very long time. we serve him or her a glass of luke warm milk. going back to what we were talking about: you may be curious how do I let these people go. when they come to my house they do not have to spend anything for food. they do not delay me for another second. If you look at their eyes its safe to assume they are somewhere else in a beautiful garden--surely not the memorial garden--strolling while holding my hand. you may ask. They just sit there prostrate looking at me. or at least fifty pesos to buy food in the side walk. they have all they want: we serve them merienda. To do that.The price of food in the places mentioned is no joke. one or two glasses of water--or if the visitor is a baby or a small child. Or how do their visits end. Well. You must have at least a hundred pesos to eat a decent and full meal in a fastfood chain. the same way Chief State Prosecutor Jovencito Zuño convinced the Prosecutors from Central Luzon from staging a mass leave next week. beer and other alcoholic drinks. Amusingly. My neighbors say nothing also! Neighter do they move when I am with them. I need to kiss them. The truth is. I am sure you understand why. I just tell them I have to go write some articles so that I can earn my living. They tell me they understand the economy is hard and every one of us needs to have some source of income. Which means. and I was able to convinced them not to put up a fan website for me. In here. We reserve those drinks for the most sane of my fans. So what do those peole do in your house. Anyway. we do a little trick to catch their attention and to remind them to stop fantasizing about me instead of spending time with me. You heard of that? The prosecutors got insulted because Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) officials accused them of taking bribes for the release of Richard Brodett. Where can you find neighbors who are willing to accept and be subjected to harsh criticism for believing almost to a point of insanity that their neighbor has the face of a god? Nowhere else. in our sala. But who buys food from the sidewalks when you are inside the mall? Instead. The humility of these people is stunning. Jorge Joseph and Joseph Tecson more popularly known as The Alabang Boys. just like a flash of light from an instrument used my Will Smith in the movie Men in Black. And. But there are drinks we avoid serving for obvious reasons: like wine. they shake their head and descend from heaven to earth. two hundred in food courts. So that the merienda we serve will not be left untouched. I do not do anything nor do I need to say a word. . You might have noticed I have been trying to avoid revealing my location. they come to my house. Only in my place. I am sorry I cannot reveal my place to you.
a daughter. They believe in their hearts that there will always be tomorrow. fifth. before you could ever say good bye they would pull one of your arms close to them and beg you not to leave them. Not only that! I would start to imagine how the Chinese was able to think about the process for making paper. with a son. two ears. and a mouth are located). third. did he also shout "Eurica!" as the legend says about Archimedes when he discovered a way to measure the amount of gold in a king's crown. And if I live in a city. or if I live in the mountains. I have something to clean my butt with. grandson. Too bad for you who cannot see the face of heaven. Not once were they ever hopeless. I do not get excited because I have something to tear. or burn. what were the materials his first experimented with. magazine or a book. where was he when this happened. If they were just some other ordinary men and women. forth. Talk about vision. which wife-the first. did he light his cigarette. his nose. No matter how hard his mind moves it will not get anywhere because it is like a car stocked in the mud. I am tired--yes TIRED!-because. But let me tell you about my mind. another day to celebrate by seeing the face they believe is the face of heaven. No amount of will power can make that mind escape the prison of his skull (where his hair grow and sometimes don't. the the compass. the gun powder and lastly. These same people have vision that is why they do not resort to acts of dispair. smiled and blew smoke to the moon? or did he ever smoke? How was his life affected by his invention? Did he become richer? was he acknoledged by the Emperror and given another wife? Did the Chinese people placed a wreathe on his head? . whichever was it/them.Of course. sixth. My mind works this way: when I see a paper for example. what were his expressions when he found out--or did he find out?--that he invented paper. who was with him--was it his wife? If it was his wife. How selfish! But no. but also the first printing machine. may it be in a newspaper. hunger and distress could not crush their spirit. granddaughter? Was he able to sleep on the first night? Did he also wake up in the middle of the night to check on his invention? Was there a moon that night? If there was a moon. All these they owe to one man. Not easy having a brilliant mind A dumb's mind is stocked inside his skull. The man who has the face of heaven. two eyes. when I see a piece of paper I remember the Chinese who not only invented the paper. I have something to sell. or eight? Was his wife. how he discovered the right material and the perfect (as the technology of that time would permit) process to make the paper. my neighbors are extraordinary people. like no amount of horse power can kick a car off the mud where it stocked. They just convince and remind themselves that they can go back every day to look at me and adore my face. second. seventh. they will be sad every time I say good bye. Poverty.
The most nutritious food is the avocado. How many times do we "misjudge" by appearance? Her name was Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he didn't play well with the other children. But that was impossible. As she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school. His clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath. I see a bat and I imagine seringes filled with the chemical called Draculin extracted from the bat's saliva and injected to a heart attack patient to prevent his blood from clutting. Dogs were domesticated before cats. she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same. A Teacher's Story True or not . inter-act with the oxygen in the atmosphere to produce the glow. and search for the answers in the encyclopedia or the internet. and neither is your head. because there in the front row. it is not easy sometimes I wish I were someone else--Einstein maybe. My mind sour in the sky of ideas and it is not stocked inside the mud in my skull. Mrs. produced by its body. cats do not have nine lives. she told the children a lie.who cares.When he died was he placed in a coffin made of paper? When he was alive. was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard. Thompson. It got to the point where Mrs. And Teddy could be unpleasant. There is an earthquake in the sea as well as in the land. and for the patient to survive. discovered in 1915. And shiver is the name of the earthquake in the body when it is sick with fever. All these knowledge come to me effortlessly. did he use tissue paper? Repeat all those questions to the other three inventions. Earth is not round. the largest is Sharon Coneta. slumped in his seat. The nearest star is called Proxima Centauri. Like most teachers. Can you handle that? There are other times my mind also works this way: I see a firefly and I imagine the the chemical called Luciferin. Thompson would actually take delight in . Admittedly. without me doing anything.
He doesn't have many friends and he sometimes sleeps in class. "Mrs. "Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh. He tries to do his best. At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught. and a bottle that was one quarter-full of perfume.. she quit teaching reading. but his father doesn't show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps aren't taken. Mrs.Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other presents. "Teddy is withdrawn and doesn't show much interest in school. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy. when she reviewed his file. As she worked with . and arithmetic. putting it on. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself. Mrs. Teddy's first grade teacher wrote. except for Teddy's. Instead." His second grade teacher wrote. She felt even worse when her students brought her Christmas presents wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper. making bold X's and then putting a big "F" at the top of his papers. she was required to review each child's past records and she put Teddy's off until last. On that very day. "His mother's death had been hard on him." His third grade teacher wrote." After the children left she cried for at least an hour." Teddy's fourth grade teacher wrote. but he is troubled because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home is a struggle.marking his papers with a broad red pen." By now. she was in for a surprise. brown paper that he got from a grocery bag. "Teddy is an excellent student.He is a joy to be around. However. He does his work neatly and has good manners. Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones missing.. and writing. Thompson. well liked by his classmates. today you smelled just like my Mother used to. she began to teach children. But she stifled the children's laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was. His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy. Mrs. and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.
" . Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the class and. saying that while things had been tough at times. Six years went by before she got another note from Teddy. telling her that she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life. Then four more years passed and yet another letter came. MD. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Of course.him. had stuck with it. Stoddard. She said. The story doesn't end there. Thompson for believing in me. Thompson did. the faster he responded. This time he explained that after he got his bachelor's degree. you have it all wrong. third in his class. He explained that his father had died a couple of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs. I didn't know how to teach until I met you. Theodore F. whispered back." Mrs. he'd stayed in school.Thompson's ear. there was yet another letter that spring. despite her lie that she would love all the children the same. she found a note under her door. You were the one who taught me that I could make a difference. his mind seemed to come alive. Mrs. By the end of the year. They hugged each other. and would soon graduate from college with the highest of honors. But now his name was a little longer the letter was signed. "Teddy. she got another letter. And she made sure she was wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on their last Christmas together." A year later. Thank you so much for making me feel important and showing me that I could make a difference. Thompson might agree to sit in the place at the wedding that was usually reserved for the mother of the groom. Thompson that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had in his whole life. he decided to go a little further. the one with several rhinestones missing. Thompson. He assured Mrs. You see. "Thank you Mrs. And guess what? She wore that bracelet. Teddy said he'd met this girl and was going to be married. and she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life. Four years after that. The letter explained that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had. from Teddy. and Dr. He then wrote that he had finished high school. The more she encouraged him. with tears in her eyes. Teddy became one of her "teacher's pets.
this devastated Carlos and the impact of it seemed to drive him even deeper into his shell. One day after school. If you would teach him again. but that has moved their group. and whatever you do. Mrs. please stay with my son. Thank you. He had no confidence and his struggles at school added to his misery. 2006 by Pete Reilly It’s late in the afternoon of an off-site professional development day. Alverez was in her first few years of teaching in a bad part of the Bronx. Towards the end of the year. . who had left his mother a few years before. Needless to say. “He still cannot read. Alverez nodded modestly. Alverez. She spoke in broken English. and knew that so much of his life hinged on his ability to read. The staff of the elementaty school has shared among themselves an event in their careers that has had an impact on them. She was a second grade teacher and she had a quiet boy. It was a good school and she was really excited. Carlos’ mother came to see Mrs.that wherever you go. Teach him to read. I think he will disappear if he has to start again with a new teacher. Carlos’ mother began again. Mrs. Alverez worked as hard as she could to help Carlos to read. A Teacher’s Story December 20. His father. Please try to do it in a positive way. “You have helped my son Carlos this year. Alverez received her assignment for the coming year. who was struggling to learn to read in her class. I’m sure he would learn. It would be easy for Carlos to fall through the cracks. He agreed. It was the plea of an immigrant mother who knew her son. acting as if he didn’t know him. I worry for him. Alverez.” Mrs. She called and politely turned down the transfer to her “dream job”. I beg you Mrs. She was given the opportunity to move to a position in another school. lived in the same building but would ignore his son. It’s a story she is too shy to tell. Carlos. Alverez asked her principal to let her move up a grade with Carlos’ entire class. The next morning Mrs. He stands and tells this story… Mrs. One of the teachers has asked to share the story of a teacher in his group with the rest of the staff.Remember . He wouldn’t talk to him or eve nod hello. you will have the opportunity to touch and/or change a person's outlook.” Mrs. Alverez went home that night and thought about the plea of Carlos’ desparate mother. but things weren’t going very well. Carlos was living with his single mother in a run down apartment building in the neighborhood.
many years later. I stepped from behind the lectern and reached out to Mrs. She began crying very sweet tears of joy. He murmured. Many.The next year went by quickly. Alverez?” In an instant they both recognized each other. Alverez. He told us about a teacher named Mrs. who stood proudly amid the applause that burst spontaneously from the audience. Without hesitation or self conciousness.” Carlos beamed with happiness. straight and tall and handsome. Alverez taught as best she could. It was just one teacher’s story. she stumbled and dropped a sheaf of papers on the concrete sidewalk. It was the end of the year and she stayed late to pack her things and clean out her classroom. Alverez?” asked the boy incredulously. When she was done she left the building to walk across the street to her car. She hoped that things would “click” for this shy. Mrs. which was completely silent. Mrs. She sighed and without hesitation. but I know you. Mrs. who had been chasing papers. you don’t know me. Here and there teachers were wiping their eyes. Mrs. you’re so big. It was Carlos. It was this teacher. Thank you very much. to whom he owed all his success. Alverez. one boy’s journey. Carlos and I graduated from high school. and do I know you?” Carlos’ friend was very serious. A gust of wind scattered the papers in all directions. interrupted. He gave the commencement speech in front of the whole school. Carlos embraced her again. Carlos was the valedictorian of the class. two tall boys rounded the corner and saw her predicament.” The teacher telling Mrs. “No. grown now. At that moment. “Carlos. Our hearts were swollen. As she got to the corner. “That’s the story she told us in our group. “Excuse me. they embraced. I am. You’re a man now. Alvarez. Carlos’ mother didn’t come back to the school that year. Are you THAT Mrs. “Thank you. frightened little boy.” Suddenly the young man’s smile disappeared. always giving Carlos a bit of extra attention. “Mrs. She sighed gratefully as the taller of the two boys approached her with her papers and a smile. The second boy. Alverez was teaching at a school in another neighborhood in the Bronx. young man. Last week. she stooped to pick them up. you…you are Mrs. “Yes. He was tearing up. Alverez that helped him learn to read and cared for him and inspired him.” I looked around the room. Alverez’s story paused for a long moment. I had to share it. Carlos’ friend insisted on shaking her hand. . They both began chasing down and retrieving the papers that by now were all over the intersection. Alverez?” She stood there looking at the two young men. She looked at him.
those that destroy our touchstones and landmarks. Honor the sorrows that teach us compassion and gratitude. 2007 by Pete Reilly Honor the spirit of teachers that walk the dark mountainside and the mysterious paths of learning at night. triumphs that teach us of transience and time. hope. It’s good to remember that when we get frustrated with the pace of change. . It’s good to honor it. memories in muscle. to know it is there. beats a heart of service. spirit molded in flesh. who see nothing beyond the halls of their golden palaces. The counselor teachers sitting at the courts of power. and renewal. especially in this season of light. The lessons of our ancestors learned in stories and carried in our genes. forcing us to find our own way. their dim lanterns lighting the way for those that follow. those that create space for our answers. in most teachers. and the great adversaries that teach us of the limits of power. teachers that demand. or invite suffering into their lives if it bring understanding. peace pete Honor the Teacher September 7. Teachers who beckon us from our darkest hiding places. whispering to kings and potentates. our bodies.Just beneath the surface. Teachers that lift us with their joyous spirits. It is good to remember this. It is the “teacher’s heart” that will ultimately change the lives of our children.
The great teachers: Life. on the edge of lost rivers. The lessons of war learned again and again by each generation. those surrounded by books. always. who know the secrets of plants the mysteries of the forest and the beginnings of time. whose voice comes to us in the moments before dreams. Those that teach with the example of their own lives. Death. in small villages. whether glorious and acclaimed. Teachers that heal. sitting quietly in the noise of our lives. the teacher who waits patiently. or unknown and unresolved. Teachers that wield a harsh hand with their lessons hard won.Teachers that see our gifts. and Love. Teachers who plant seeds of learning that come to life long after they are gone. Those that live in caves and on mountaintops. and those surrounded by the infinite incarnations of nature. the teacher within. the teacher who loves us so well. not touched by our stories and illusions. our own greatness. our companions. . reveals all things. even as we deny them as Peter denied Jesus three times in his fear and his shame. as we surrender completely to our own voice. As the blank page teaches possibility.
and leftovers. "But tough. be able to do 180 other things not connected with the subject she teaches. run on coffee.can still teach a class when they don't want to learn.. and be right. While the Good Lord was creating teachers. "You cannot imagine what this teacher can do or ." without so much as uttering a word. And wait until you see my Special Ed teacher! She is truly special.and all of this in both sexes. We hope you will enjoy it as well. "It's too soft.." And the Lord said. The Creation of Teachers *Note: This is a sweet poem about the "creation" of teachers. "Have you read the specs on this order? She has to: stand above all her students." The angel circled the model of the teacher very slowly. the ones here in front can look at a child when he goofs up and reflect. "You're doing a lot of fiddling around with this one." said the Lord. I received this one year for teacher appreciation day and read it every time I feel under appreciated." "I can't.. "Six pairs of hands.. "One pair that can see a student for what he is and not what society has labeled him. He was into His sixth day of 'overtime' when the angel appeared and said." she sighed.Honor the teacher. The angel shook her head slowly and said. time for her job as she does for herself. Tomorrow.loves thousands of children that are not her own." "Lord. have a smile that can endure everything from practical jokes to pay cuts. Another pair must be in the back of her head... "Come to bed. Already I have one who comes to work when she is too sick . communicate vital knowledge to thousands of students daily." said the angel." said the Lord excitedly. "I'm so close to creating something so close to myself. and have six pairs of hands." "That's on the standard model?" asked the angel. 'I understand and I still believe in you." said the Lord. have as much. go on teaching when parents question her every move and the administration doesn't understand.not possible... but what she has to know. OF course. touching His sleeve gently. she will never take anything her students do for granted. cokes.." "It's not the hands that are causing me problems. "It's the three pairs of eyes that teachers have to have.. and sometimes more. yet be on their level. to see what she shouldn't. The Lord nodded.
" said the angel. "It's a tear.Author Unknown A Message of Thanks for Teachers By Donna Fargo A Message of Thanks To All the Great Teachers In This World Thank you for being such wonderful teachers. a little respect. but she can reason and compromise." The Lord moved in for a closer look and gently lifted the drop of moisture to His finger where it glistened and sparkled in the light. Thank you for not being afraid to treat students like real people. and pride. These are all gifts that are so important to a student's development and that your students will always remember. just as they will also Remember you. "What's it for?" "It's for joy." . and caring people. You can't imagine the stress factor. "I told you that you were putting too much into this model. sadness." He said. "There's a leak. approval. disappointment." Finally the angel bent over and ran her fingers across the cheek of the teacher. Words of encouragement. exemplary role models." "You are a genius.endure. Thank you for showing acceptance. compassion." she pronounced. "It's not a leak. loneliness. pain." "Can she think?" "Not only can she think. simple gestures . and appreciation." "A tear?" asked the angel. Thank you for knowing your subjects and sharing your knowledge. The Lord looked somber. "I didn't put it there.
Thank you for the enduring impression you've made In the lives you have touched. I tend to want to do too much. Your attitude translates into a spirit of friendliness and good will towards others in an atmosphere of creative freedom. administration.of kindness from a teacher promote the perfect climate for students to study. “Who are you to dream such big dreams?” . You are so important. but it’s when I begin to put it into action that things seem to fall apart on me. Your lessons are permanent. (See: “Accountability 1″. Transformation always begins with ME! Whether I am a student. I salute the good work you've done. Thank you for answering the call to be teachers. Everyone sees the problem somewhere else. No one wants to commit to going first. it is up to me to change. and you foster this feeling in your classroom. and the state ed department waits for the feds. and I think you for your positive influence. parents. You have passed on invaluable instruction and wisdom and created pleasurable moments associated with learning that will Always be sweet memories. the superintendent waits for the state education department. change the world in big ways. the principal waits for the superintendent. At the same time I fight the little voice in my head that says. superintendent or director of technology. The First Tree November 7. You improve our world. I find this concept pretty easy to understand. Every community needs people like you. We think “If only the (teachers. Your contributions are immeasurable. how do we start? The answer to that question seems simple…we start with ourselves. joy and ease. aim high. Teachers wait for the principal to make the changes. “This I Believe…” I said “…transforming our schools will take effective and committed leadership at every level and from every individual. I appreciate the people you are. community. “A Simple Practice to Change Education and the World”) “ If we are committed to transformation. learn and grow. state ed. principal. or feds) “Got it!” things would surely change. teacher. 2007 by Pete Reilly A few weeks ago in the post.
“It took me a lot of days and nights to convince people that women could improve their environment without much technology or without much financial resources. In 1976. and other issues important to women. the success that followed many years later would not have happened. and over time takes on a life of its own. So she began seeking funding to plant more trees. or their building and soon the entire place comes alive. I see it over and over again in my life. nutrition. She wanted to have sustainable wood for fuel. the Greenbelt Movement was formed. She saw that planting trees could curtail the effects of deforestation and desertification. the Greenbelt movement has planted more than 40 million trees and provided work for many women throughout Africa. What produces the magic energy that inspires others to leave their comfort zones and allow their hearts to join in something new? . if she hadn’t begun planting. one person steps forward and starts something in their classroom. Her role as a leader took shape when she began planting some trees in her back garden.” Since its formation. The Greenbelt movement has gone on to campaign for education. as well as to combat soil erosion. Wangari Maathai was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004. born to a farm family in the highlands of Mount Kenya. but I do know that no matter what her dream. and the first woman in East and Central Africa to earn a doctoral degree. I don’t know what she dreamed of as she planted her first tree. Tree by tree she moved forward. Her work began to build momentum and become organized.I remind myself of Wangari Maathai.
I must remember to start with the first “tree”. Michigan A MEAN teacher insists that each student do the best s/he is capable of doing. A MEAN teacher does not allow free time in class until all class-work is done. and their belongings neat and clean. My transformation and the transformation of our schools will come when I have the courage to step forth and take action. I know it is possible. themselves.I believe it is the simplicity of authentic action. THE WORLD NEEDS MORE MEAN* TEACHERS! . my own neighborhood. and so on. A MEAN teacher makes life miserable for students by insisting that they always tell the truth. Are you a Mean Teacher? By Laura M Staunton. I need to remind myself…that there are “trees” to be planted in my own yard. New Jersey and Barb Erickson. A MEAN teacher gives homework regularly. A MEAN teacher makes students keep the classroom. and successful. sometimes even on weekends. for this is the journey that will take me to places unknown. and then the second. responsible. A MEAN teacher produces students who are respectful. A MEAN teacher calls on students who don't raise their hands to answer questions. A MEAN teacher holds each student responsible for her/his own behavior. A MEAN teacher does not accept incomplete assignments. A MEAN teacher requires all students to treat each other with respect. A MEAN teacher insists that students hand in their assignments on time and takes off points for late assignments. A MEAN teacher requires each student to think carefully and to make her/his own decisions.
It’s so boring. no.” Michael added.*(MEAN = Making Excellence A Necessity) The Professionals March 28. It was nearing the last day or so of the school year and this particular group of students didn’t want to leave. Reilly. You were being you – “teacher” and we were being us – “screw ups”. You tried to make it interesting. Biily continued. “Guys. “We know you tried. The others smiled too. They were common visitors to the principal’s office and denizens of detention. none of us like school. Mr. There was no way you were going to teach us. They had other. You’re good kids.” I responded reflexively.” said Billy. 2007 by Pete Reilly They sat around me. If you saw them outside of school. Why did you make it so hard on yourselves?” It struck me how kind they were. for they had been the students that had gotten the least out of my class. They were really nice kids with good senses of humor. but we didn’t need half the stuff you tried to teach us. they were peaceful with their plight. “You guys are pretty smart.”I liked the goofy music you played and the poetry”. They weren’t angry or holding grudges.” The others nodded agreement. we just want you to know that it’s not your fault. They accepted the consequences of their actions. “We’re screw ups. you’d be amazed at their competence and confidence. and I sat on a desk with my feet on a chair in front of me. because they felt they had been treated fairly. “No. It was like they were professionals at this…no hard feelings…business is business. sprawled on crudely-carved. more important things going on in their lives. “You’re not so bad for a teacher. It was the last period of the day.” he smiled at me. and school in general. . you aren’t screw ups. I shook my head. “I liked the books we read. It was sort of strange that these particular boys were hanging out in my classroom. the leader of the group. graffiti filled desks with small metal and wood chairs.” Kevin chimed in. “Mr. How appreciative. They were just completely out of place in school. But they weren’t screw ups. Reilly” now they became a little more serious.
but always my soul mates. I could count on them reflecting back to me the best and worst of my teaching. These were the school rejects. but these. In the fall. too young to really be my friends. Any of them could tell you where to hunt. They were like a Greek chorus in my teaching life because they were so real. we have taken something precious from our children. point out the quiet fishing hole where trout gathered on the edge of the frothing current. not taught well. 2007 by Pete Reilly At birth we are blessed with a natural curiosity.com/classroom_resources/inspirational_humorous/index. They are all grown men now. They are frozen in time for me. They weren’t going to “pretend” this was important to them. DNA-based.ht ml The Wolves of Learning April 2. domesticated. and subdued. So many students entered and left my life. My Huck Finns.inspiringteachers. or where to lay a trap in a hidden Adirondack bog. It is in our early years that we are “wolves of learning”. Reilly. . I remember pushing aside the brown lunch bags in the teachers’ refrigerator in the faculty room to make space for them. the poor kids.” I think I see what the problem is. call it the burning relevance of the empty stomach. My Greek Chorus. There is a deep. Generally. it hunts where it needs to in order to satisfy its deep hunger. Over the centuries. Let me fix it. anything that was not relevant. the professionals. The wildness of our natural curiosity has been tamed. in my life’s memory. If I was at my best I would see them engaged fully. as if by magic.” and sure enough Billy reached in to the bowels of the complex machine that was my car and began to work. We are called to learn.“Let me look under the hood Mr. There is a great wildness in it. we awaken each day with an insatiable appetite to learn. as we have institutionalized learning. Our natural curiosity is like a wild animal. not well planned. and they would find something else to keep them busy. and from ourselves. when the bullhead were plentiful one of them would catch a dozen and bring them to me wrapped in plastic. something that got them in trouble. natural connection between learning and survival. They represent the best of those I taught. As children. http://www. remain. A shaft of sunlight illuminates a world of dust and delicate objects floating in air. I suspect that some must have children of their own. our young “wolves of learning”. Anything less. A child who catches a glimpse of this will stop whatever it’s doing and begin to explore what it sees. They weren’t going to “play” school like the others.
we offer them bland processed learning laid out in prescribed amounts at certain times of the day. They lived in the Sarah Dessert and traveled by Camelot. or even serendipity. The climate of the Sarah is such that the inhabitants have to live elsewhere. 2. Let us find ways to give our children back their birthright.wordpress. Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree. Guinessis. We have so successfully domesticated our students that they are likely to rebel when they are asked to use the natural gifts for learning with which they were born. asked. they put minimum effort. They are in compliance mode. The Bible is full of interesting caricatures. They rarely experience learning by their own wits. little responsibility for their learning and whatever natural curiosity they have has been replaced with a structured curriculum. In the first book of the Bible. http://preilly. begging to have its master serve its dinner to it in a dish. Fear of retribution becomes the prime motivator rather than the excitement of learning. Let us find ways to foster the wildness and thrill of learning again. how much. and when. I believe that thoughtful educators can create environments that are less restrictive and provide much more natural habitat for learning. It’s as if we were trying to release a pet house dog into the wilderness. Ancient Egypt was inhabited by mummies and they all wrote in hydraulics. the odds of survival would be small. Cain. One of their children. Let us answer the “Call of the Wild”. Since it is our agenda and not theirs. Compliance produces the lowest level of effort.We have done this by giving our children virtually no control over their education. We have trained them to expect to be fed without going on the hunt. There have to be ways that we can organize our learning institutions to accommodate individual curiosity and the standardized curriculum. "Am I my brother's son?" . their natural curiosity and facility to learn. into what we ask them to do. They will not gorge on learning and fight over the scraps until their bellies are full. We decide what they are fed. Within hours the dog would be back in front of the door. 1. Like domesticated pets. their natural curiosity. if any effort at all.com/2007/04/02/the-wolves-of-learning/ Kids Say the Darndest Things Below is a compilation of actual student bloopers collected by teachers from 8th through 12th grades. We reward them for following directions and doing what they are told and reprimand them if they wander too far from our agenda.
Finally Magna Carta provided that no man should be hanged twice for the same offense. They killed him. Homer was not written by Homer but by another man of that name. And Sir Francis Drake circumcised the world with a 100 foot clipper. In mid-evil times most people were alliterate. After his death. Brutus. He died before he ever reached Canada. 16. 13. When she exposed herself before her troops they all shouted "hurrah. History calls people Romans because they never stayed in one place for very long. 7. Moses led the Hebrew slaves to the Red Sea. Gutenberg invented removable type and the Bible. Julius Caesar extinguished himself on the battlefields of Gaul. 9." 11. who wrote many poems and verses and also wrote literature. hurled the biscuits. It was an age of great inventions and discoveries. 12. jumped. Another story was William Tell. and threw the java. Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the ten commandments. he gasped out: "Tee hee. Joan of Arc was burnt to a steak and was cannonized by Bernard Shaw. the Romans conquered the Greeks. and without them we wouldn't have history. Queen Elizabeth was the "Virgin Queen.3. 4. The Greeks also had myths. . Sir Walter Raleigh is a historical figure because he invented cigarettes and started smoking. Solomom had three hundred wives and seven hundred porcupines. Actually. The Greeks were a highly sculptured people. The Ides of March murdered him because they thought he was going to be made king. Greeks ran races. 15. who shot an arrow through an apple while standing on his son's head." As a queen she was a success. Dying. Nero was a cruel tyranny who would torture his subjects by playing the fiddle to them. 8. his career suffered a dramatic decline. Socrates was a famous Greek teacher who went around giving people advice. 14. 5. 6. In the Olympic games. where they made unleavened bread which is bread made without any ingredients. A myth is a female moth." 17. Socrates died from an overdose of wedlock. The greatest writer of the futile ages was Chaucer. Eventually. Another important invention was the circulation of blood. 10.
18. 19. Later. Then his wife died and he wrote Paradise Regained. Many people died and many babies were born. Writing at the same time as Shakespeare was Miguel Cervantes. all in Islamic pentameter. The next great author was John Milton. His ships were called the Nina. the Pilgrims crossed the ocean. Christopher Columbus was a great navigator who discovered America while cursing about the Atlantic. He was born in the year 1564. and the Santa Fe. He wrote tragedies. Romeo's last wish was to be laid by Juliet. He never made much money and is famous only because of his plays. During the Renaissance America began. and hysterectomies. Captain John Smith was responsible for all this. 20. Milton wrote Paradise Lost. comedies. The greatest writer of the Renaissance was William Shakespeare. Romeo and Juliet are an example of a heroic couplet. the Pinta. The winter of 1620 was a hard one for the settlers. and this was called Pilgrim's Progress. supposedly on his birthday. . He wrote Donkey Hote.