Laura Fischer

"Bowling For Columbine" - Poem by Laura Fischer

Excerpts originally from the film directed by Michael Moore.

Now, it's time for a brief History of the United States of America... Hi, boys and girls! Ready to get started?

Once upon a time, there were these people in Europe called 'pilgrims' and they were afraid of being persecuted. So they all got in a boat and sailed to the New World where they wouldn't have to be scared ever again. (Oh, I'm so relaxed. I feel so much safer.)

But as soon as they arrived, they were greeted by savages and they got scared all over again. (Injuns!) So they killed them all. Now, you'd think wiping out a race of people would calm them down, but no. Instead, they started getting frightened of each other.

(Witch!) So they burned witches. In 1775 they started killing the British, so they could be free. And it worked.

But they still didn't feel safe. So they passed a second amendment which said every white man could keep his gun (I loves my gun, loves my gun.) which brings us to the genius idea of slavery.

You see, boys and girls, the white people back then were also afraid of doing any work. So they went to Africa, kidnapped thousands of black people, brought them back to America, and forced them to work very hard for no money. And I don't mean 'no money' like: (I work at Wal Mart and make no money.) I mean zero dollars. Nothing, nada, zip. Doing it that way made the USA the richest country in the world.

So did having all that money and free help calm the white people down? No way. They got even more afraid. That's because after two hundred years of slavery, the black people now outnumbered the white people in many parts of the South. Well, you can pretty much guess what came next: the slaves started rebelling. There were uprisings and the old masters' heads got chopped off and when white people heard of this, they were freaking out and going (I want to live! Don't kill me, big black man.)

Well, just in the nick of time came Samuel Colt, who, in 1836 invented the first weapon ever that could be fired over and over without having to reload. And all the settlers were like: Yee hah! But it was too late. The North soon won the Civil War and the slaves were free. Yup, they were free now to go chop all the old masters' heads off. And everybody was like: (Oh, no, we're gonna die.) But the freed slaves took no revenge. They just wanted to live in peace.

But you couldn't convince the white people of this. So they formed the Ku Klux Klan and, in 1871 the same year the Klan became an illegal terrorist organization, another group was founded: the National Rifle Association.

Soon, politicians passed one of the first gun laws, making it illegal for any black person to own one. It was a great year for America, the KKK and the NRA. Of course, they had nothing to do with each other and this was just a coincidence. One group legally promoted responsible gun ownership and the other group shot and lynched black people.

And that's the way it was all the way till 1955 when a black woman broke the law by refusing to move to the back of the bus. White people just couldn't believe it. (Huh? Why won't she move? What's going on?) Man, all Hell broke loose. Black people everywhere started demanding their rights. White people had a major, freaky feel meltdown and they were all like: (Run away! Run away!) And they did. They all ran fleeing to the suburbs, where it was all white and safe and clean. And they went out and bought a quarter of a billion guns. And put locks on their doors, alarms in their houses, and gates around the neighborhoods. And finally, they were all safe and secure and snug as a bug.

And everyone lived happily ever after.


So in my first semester of teaching I learned all the warning signs and man was I on the look out - the odds of having a kid that was gonna shoot up a school are a drop in the ocean but if you can spot trouble before it happens and intervene, well you can save lives.

Jefferson County 911.
I'm a teacher
at Columbine High School.
Somebody's shooting a gun
at Columbine -, Columbine High School.

WHY? I don't even know who the student is.
Oh, dear God! Okay!
Can you please hurry?
Oh, God! ..Kids, just stay down.
I don't know where he -

So my second semester of teaching I got this kid and he's got all the warning signs, so I got him to stay after class and show me what he's been writing in his journal, and, jesus, it's bleak.So, I call the parents, I say,
"But he seems so antisocial.I can't see what's going on inside him, he's a mystery
- so was William Shakespeare -
I want him to interact with more kids
- they're jerks -
I want him to be more normal
- how dare you say my son's not nor -

He came into the library,
shot everybody around me,
then put a gun to my head
and asked if we all wanted to die, and...
they all told us
to get under the desk,
and we all got under the desk.
I just started screaming and crying
and telling them not to shoot me.
And so he shot the girl instead.
He shot her in the head in front of me.

Topic(s) of this poem: guns

Form: Prose Poem

Poet's Notes about The Poem

A Collection of Excerpts from Bowling for Columbine directed by Michael Moore.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 19, 2018

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