Fascinated And Motivated By An English Teacher
He was my instructor
In a college English class.
His stories took us to Italy
And the way women cry
To New York City
And the way homeless people
Walk with the best dressed ones.
Where the sound of
“Help he stole my purse”
Is heard frequently throughout the day.
To France where he enjoyed sitting at Cafés
Watching well dressed French women talk
Enjoying a language other than his own.
He told us of his joy of going to countries
Where he didn’t know that language very well
Just for some relaxation
Because as an English teacher
He was always listening to whether a person
Slaughtered the language or not.
In a foreign country
He didn’t have that problem
He could just be himself
Not a teacher looking for words
You left out, didn’t put in
Or used improperly.
It wasn’t that he was feeling superior to you
When he spotted your misuse of words.
It was that he wanted to sit down with you
And teach you exactly how to
Put your words on paper
So they would come out the best way they could.
Some people didn’t understand that
And really didn’t like him for his
But I understood
Being always grateful
For his input
Even after my breakdown
When he said my writing was like
A Third graders.
He told me that he only wanted to help me
He didn’t normally take time with people
Who didn’t care about their writing.
He knew I cared
So he challenged me
To do better
Draft after draft.
He said he liked what I had to say
I just needed to say it better
And I was healed from my breakdown
After he said that.
Each time I hear him speak now
Or listen to a poem he reads
I am captivated again
By the way he strings words
To tell stories with meaning
Hoping that one day
I could be even half as
Good as him
With my words.
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