So I Took My Students on a Walk
Today I was so happy I made this poem—
The 8am sun was still horizontal,
East, a blessing behind one oak
& across the roof of a stone cottage
dappling the grass, the moving cars,
the would-be truants, & the tardy poets
making their way away from classroom bars.
They made it past a departed robin,
a faculty parking lot, begrudgingly,
a poster for a cat: missing, a week gone
& still tacked hopefully to the power pole,
next to a sprinkler rain dancing to a metronome’s beat,
& finally around a tennis court of peers, performing.
By the time we made it to the school’s front doors,
the experiment had run its course
but plastered walls & artificial light threatened us,
so in a garden that courts the library
they sat, mostly motionless, near a two-fish pond
& gathered meditatively & beyond their years.
There, their silence made this poem, a blessing, never intended.
William C. Patterson