Some Years

Some years
Kids graduate too soon
Still so much to learn about respect and kindness
Or sacrifice in the name of another
Despite a proficient scoring on the yearly tests

Some years
A prodigy presents himself in class, ready
For guidance, for a challenge -- world curiosity is his thirst,
Learning, despite the weight of the system on you, the teacher
Or a student blossoms unexpectedly under a ray of your attention,
She fondly remembers a quickly mentioned quote that you no longer recall sharing

The tradition has been, come eighteen, it's time
To trust that the training is finished
The coaching has mattered; they are ready for the life beyond the walls
Their parents wave and clap with love and pride and a little sadness
And the hearts of their teachers
Endure the sweet bruise of goodbye

Some years
You could say, "I have lost them - we did not connect."
You could say, "I have made a difference to at least this one."
You could say, "I'll be back in next year for another round."

Elise Brand