My First Teacher
They say the years from one to five,
when tiny tots become alive,
li'l professors they are, really
as they take in and store so freely
an overload of information,
as if by heaven-sent dictation.
Those years of active acquisition
are followed by the earnest mission
of teachers in the local school
who teach even the dumbest fool.
And, if you want to know the reason
why some of us learn out of season,
continue to obtain the goods
about the why's and what's and should's,
in playgrounds and on dusty streets.
It's when your hungry, blue eye meets
that of the teacher to connect.
In a split second a direct
and lasting bond is herewith born.
And from that moment you are torn
between the world and your first love
when she regards you from above.
But if no spark arises there
the two of you will never share
a common path through those first years,
and when your graduation nears,
you'll say good bye with no regret,
as cool as on the day you met.
For those who do feel adoration,
in early years a fair sensation,
you will increase your own IQ
because you understand the true
sweet essence of your little mind.
You learn to count, to write and find
that teacher's eyes are your reward.
When other pupils do act bored
you whip your mental faculties
for one good reason, it's to please
the one who does appreciate
your intellect in a debate.
You learn a trillion silly facts
about strange wars and secret pacts.
And, in the end, when you're all grown
it is as if you'd always known.
Your parents spend with you their days,
but seldom shower you with praise.
You learn for life, say those who know,
not for the school system, oh no.
But mine was such a lovely creature,
I did my thing just for the teacher.
Herbert Nehrlich's Other Poems
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