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D/ATA

The square

root

of a first grader is

1.

Children added and calculated.

Manipulated.

Divided and multiplied.

Squared and halved.

Into tiny

little

pieces.

An arm here.

A leg there.

A brain incised and gouged out

with a serrated equation.

Standard No.1.OA4:

Understand

                  subtraction

 as

                                  an

               unknown

addend

                                                                     problem.

Put it together.

Now.

Faster.

Without your arm.

Or your leg.

Or your brain.

After you have been made 1/5 the sum of who you once were.

And when it’s over,

You

all   will  be

tiny numbers

added

up

into dividends of other

bodies.

You add up

into

me, and they add up

into we.

Running     numbers,

tallies,

percentages.

Groups of future tax brackets.

      Dismembered.


I sat to write an essay this evening on the current school board election that is currently in full swing in my city. And instead this poem came out. All of my frustration for my kids and how they are boxed, tagged, and numbered without any real representation of them or their abilities. Just tests. Standards. 504’s. IEP’s. A future tax payer. Global contributor. Economy booster.

But really, they’re my sons.

 

 

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