Teacher Dreams Again


Teacher-dreams resume as I plan to sub.
Schoolhouse Rock with vegies
students staging Okrahoma;
biology with broccoli.
In the audience I rip frantically
through the Playbill teacher’s text
to match personas dramates to class-lists,
look for scenes and lessons to direct,
but the room’s too dark to read; the action
builds, the song-and-dance an improv jumble,
while serious critics,
real educators from the NEA,
tisk frown and shake their heads in front row desks
looking for me to stop the madness
as if I were in charge, their reviews
appear like cartoon thought-bubbles flown on wires:
This is not miosis and mitosis!
We will not countenance such tripe!
This travesty will close at intermission!
But the show goes on and on anon
as wave on wave of smiling adolescents
shuffle across the well-waxed classroom floor,
cardboard carrots and tomatoes dip and swing
wide-open mouths sing through stagey smiles
innocent pure and out of tune
fresh new teeth resplendent in the glare
of lights, backed and framed by cheesy
farm-scene cut-outs drooping from the chalk-tray.
At least this dream is not on Zoom.