Ripton, VT: North Branch School
“I’m going to read it again,” I said, and I did, according that slight poem every bit of dignity and loving attention I could.
“So, what do you all think?”
They all raised their hands. There was no more wonderful sound and sight than that class full of hands rising up because they had all been moved, that rustling and forward-leaning, smiling excitement of hearing and seeing as though for the first time.
“I think it was really great, Steve, that you wrote that and turned it in,” said Annie.
“I’m proud of you, Steve,” said Mira. “It shows a whole other side of you.”
“It makes me want to go write a poem too,” Nick added, smiling.
“We’re waiting, Nick, we’re waiting,” I said.
“I have always thought of Steve as a grungy teen punk skateboarder,” said Doug. “But obviously he has these other aspects to his personality. It makes me think that Steve is more of a student than he has shown so far. Sometimes it seems that he doesn’t really care about school, or perhaps it’s hard for him. But a poem. I’m impressed.”
“I like what it was about, how he talked about–” Janine began, halting, not quite sure of what she knew or felt. “That part about being willing to never break a promise.”
“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” I said.