Thursday, November 19, 2009

worth it?

the benefit-cost analysis

what is there new to say?
when I take time from the doing
to thinking about the doing,
part of me is like an old Rolladex
which I spin and there I find list after list
on which I update what to do, what to write,
and then if I’ve written of it,
I need to figure if there are still subsets, tangents,
different takes on the same original
worth the venture of focus and words,

I hope that, with the breaths I’m still allowed,
that I can, in any way,
pay back any of the cost
my life debits from the whole,
that’s part of why I write,
that whole with which life must negotiate,
the world that is before us, is here now,
and will be just fine when we no longer
subtract our individuality from the possibilities
inherent in the moment,

how can we tell who should use
what is only possibility and then it is spent?

how easy, and maybe how right,
it is to judge a choice, a reality worthless than the other,
for when we spend resources, possibilities, every moment
we judge one to be worth more than the other,
every child, everyone of us, every choice is a bet with the future
that the benefit is worth the cost.

by Henry Walker
November 14, ‘09

Friday, November 6, 2009

the stress tests we call work

a few words about the effort of teaching and ?

the going gets tougher . . .

when the going gets tougher,
and moving forward is no longer just a stroll in a gentled park,
we each face a stress test
to see if our systems are up to the challenge:

will we lose our will and give up
on finding a way?

will we have enough reserves
to throw again and again at the wall
until a way opens?

will we have enough flexibility
as tiredness stiffens our mood,
anger easily switches on,
and we can rage at the walls that seem all around us?

we’re over two months into the school year
and now our conditioning has to prove itself,

like in running, many can sprint in September,
it’s October and November, the long distance running,
that pushes the lungs and tests the heart,

teacher and student alike feel that pressure
and can add more of that pressure to the other,

every day, every class, every moment is a test,

may we all find the wherewithal to give our best,
and may that best be enough.

by Henry Walker
November 3, ‘09