The student’s eucatastrophe


Now that the new year has been rung in, my roommate and I have been talking about our aspirations. Aspirations for the rest of our time in Africa, for ourselves, and for our future in general. The discussions are lengthy, but one tangible hope is to better our poetic composition. This morning I wrote a narrative poem in response to a metaphor I heard in church. This poem was originally published on, intended to house the 2014 poems of Woody, Sydney, and myself – enjoy!


I strive to do my very best
I answer my questions and take my tests
But my teacher, she is, oh so strict
She’s awfully quick to give a lick

It’s our behavior that she wants to fix
And, with love, she’ll use her sticks
to correct the error that we’ve made
until crime and punishment have been weighed.

My teacher knew I was a good ol’ boy
who kept to my things and played with my toys.
But my imperfect opportune complexion
helped me learn an important lesson:

That apparently I’m not all that great
because of a candy bar that I stole and ate.
I took from Adam when least expecting
and with fingers and mouth I began dissecting.

Until candy was gone, but evidence remained
for on my face were chocolate stains.
So Adam stood up and reported my crime
And soon, I knew, I’d have to serve my time.

“A new candy I would have to replace
and a firm spanking is what I’d embrace”
said the teacher who sought a just solution,
having no knowledge of the coming substitution.

 Johnny Clark stood up and said to the teacher,
“I know of these friends and their conflict runs deeper.
But I, as your son, ask you to hear me – 
I have some candy and I will give it for free.

But my love, oh no, it won’t stop there.
I myself will bend over the chair
so that your wrath which is in the right
will instead hit me with all of it’s might.”

Johnny stood up and ventured forward,
meanwhile my jaw, it fell to the floor board.
My eyes, they squinted, and my cheeks were wetted
at the sight of my debt being corrected.

“I’m sorry! Forgive me! This is all my fault!
The stolen candy, it tasted of salt!
No more do I want to be a thief,
Your love, it begs, that I turn new a leaf.

So take my lunch, my pencil, and eraser too.
They’re worthless to me if I’m not following you.
A brand new creation I’ve been made today
and I will fight and struggle to follow your way.”