elementary lesson, grade five.

by Katherine

Today’s buses held listening ears.

Every morning from that office window,
I millisecond-wish that the yellow monsters won’t roll into the gravelly lot
and when they do, every morning,
I halfminute-pray that this bunch will be more delightful
than the last.  Then the open-door 9:23 am air horribly shudders me as it whirls
through October and womanly cramps and wet shower hair
(I clearly rushed this morning),
and we’re pointing the drivers to make them fit somewhere
and already forgetting that they were actually early this time
and ending our grumbling because we love this place (and all ninety of them will, too.)

We were Principally promised
“worst-behaved” and “rambunctious” fifth-grade today. So morning joy came slow
until I looked at the first and every group and saw something else:
Eyes: still, eager
Voices: hushed!, glad
Limbs: subdued, ready

I see.
Bring it on, you say?
This is what it’s all about. I’m in.

Yesterday’s school brought the first-grader’s celestial, dimpled:
Can you see Jesus through the telescope?
with acorns spilling out of pockets.

And today, no questions so deep (perhaps), but answers plumbing human love and showing me low-ropes redemption:
We’re here, friend. You belong to this.
Curtis monkeyed and Emily shook, but the ladder of us is balanced the same.
Even the slipping are not lost.