Thursday, December 6, 2012

OIK Thursday: profligate

She was trying to explain the quality of her work with a particularly challenged, particularly unready group of kindergarteners.  Leaning wearily on the table in the teachers' lounge, she slalomed her hands forward like slippery fish.

"We're just doing the best we can, squandering our way into learning."


Go on--

Use up every yip and shout!
Waste every chance to taste the paste
to plunge your fingers into paint
to wallow in the fallen blocks
to bear-hug buddies on the rug

Empty every box of counters!
Dump the baskets full of books!
Don't hold back,
don't save or budget--
Spend it, spill it all right now

Splash out every flash of wonder,
squander every surge of squeal!
Tomorrow is another day and
all amazed, we wake up wealthy.
Looks like learning grows on trees.

Heidi Mordhorst | 2012


  1. So rich! So joyful! Lovely. (And yet, I can feel that teacher's pain!!)

  2. The first stanza makes me very uneasy - but I love the way the spending metaphor develops to the end.

  3. Oh Heidi, I LOVE this poem. It is like saying, "OK, go ahead an be a kindergartener." Be a kid.
    Thank you for taking the time to write this poem and for sharing it.
    I'd love to hear you read it out loud, I can just feel the happy abandon.

  4. I love the use of the word "squander", both is what this teacher said and in your poem, "squander every surge of squeal!". I love it! Brings me back to my teaching days...:-)
    Thanks for sharing your words,

  5. "We wake up wealthy." We do, don't we? Great reminder!

  6. This captures kindergarten life so well! They are the most fearless of all elementary school students.

  7. I've been thinking of this one today since I read it making the early rounds this morning.

    Squandering indeed! Love your stealthy approach to this idea. Thanks for sharing.

  8. I love the concept of using up every ounce of energy we have every day, which I think applies to whatever task we're attempting. Thank you for this inspiring nudge!

  9. This is fabulous and inspiring and beautifully crafted, full of life and hope!

    Thank you, Heidi!


  10. Thanks to all for stopping by and for the generous compliments. Sometimes you sorta know where you want the poem to go when you start and then by the end it surprises you. That happened here.

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