The lines are fallen vnto me in pleasant places: yea, I haue a faire heritage.
– Psalm 16:6, Geneva Bible
Teaching resumes tomorrow. I lean over the bed’s gunwales and pull bobbing pillows from the floor.
First thing I read this new year – Louisa Igoria’s new poem, “A Herald,” with this reminder:
And if you nick
the skin of the outline,
in the box of 64, there is one
stick of gold, another
of silver, their wax base soft enough
to blend like a halo around everything –
Crossing over last night’s date line, I dreamed I was flying upside down. Something winged me; I wanted to look down to see what it was. But it was best to renew my fellowship with the changeless stars.
In an age where it’s easy to blurt out anything to an invisible audience, I’m glad to have a decade’s worth of practice saying things chiefly for my own benefit.
And for mine.
George Szirtes concluded forty years of teaching yesterday. He was kind enough to remind me of writing instruction’s ever-fixèd mark. When he started his final paragraph with “As for the institutions,” I realized that he hadn’t been writing about school at all. Well, as for it:
The current drive towards an ever more corporate business model is the opposite of learning: it operates on the lines of the nineteenth century mill glossed by twenty-first century public relations.
That’s all it was. So, cheered by lines from three teachers, tomorrow I’ll disembark.