Treasure Island

Debora Short

(August 4 / Florida)

The Teacher’s Desk


A little research reveals she is nearly
One hundred fifteen years of age, born in New York

She was… eight beautiful and dainty turned legs
Support her solid black walnut continence

Her original owner liked to cross his right leg
His boots scarred her lower left inside drawer supports

I discovered her outside under another
Old desk, both stored under an old tarp, mud and

Spiders along with a bird’s nest liberally
Housing themselves in every nook and cranny

Her once magnificent finish now bubbled
Scarred with her learned songs and time-worn history

I wonder did she once assist with Latin lessons
Or with a young student’s finest penned flourishes

Did she give the gift of wanderlust?
As she taught about the Galapagos

A little gel stripper proved she cleans up well
A clear of coat min-wax restored her lovely rosy glow

Oh her long journey’s scars remain under
Her new redo, but she does stand stoically proud and renewed

In purpose, begging off on a good re-
Sanding …lecturing wittily on an important and wise life lesson

We all fall prey to predatory wrinkles and faded
Exteriors, even our very souls are scoffed

Yet our heart cores are still tenderly sheltered
Deep within, and those old pulls are actually

Copper-ey bronze and filled with redheaded determined grit
To stay on task, a job description now to transformed

From those old drawers come lessons in molecular biology
Anatomy and physiology, the healing arts are now her newer gifts


(Refinishing Life, Tennessee,18 May 2007)

Submitted: Friday, May 18, 2007
Edited: Sunday, February 27, 2011

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Comments about this poem (The Teacher’s Desk by Debora Short )

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  • Not a member No 4 (5/25/2007 4:57:00 PM)

    Personification/metaphor/analogy - this old desk really gets the thorough and tender loving treatment it deserves. I think it'll enjoy a variety of interesting experiences at the hands of its new partner. I loved the eloquent, insightful guided tour and the 'lessons'! A terrifically polished example of your work! I'm awed. xx jim (Report) Reply

  • Duncan Wyllie (5/20/2007 2:45:00 PM)

    I like a good restoration job on such a beautiful piece of work and I was not disappointed by this one
    Take care
    Love duncan X (Report) Reply

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