Almost every single day he arrives to school, puts his things down, and heads to the communal computers and printers in the next room. He is hell-bent on starting his day with a bit of beauty before everything else interferes, and his kindness involuntarily drives him to make sure the rest of us do, too. He returns to our office a minute later and walks slowly from desk to desk, holds out a white page and leans in to quietly ask, "Care for a poem today?" like a waiter offering appetizers, on the house.
Yes, we always care for a poem today. They give us something to laugh about or something to contemplate, the soft inhale before students arrive and sweep us into the next seven hours. The poems are always good, but these are some of my favorites.
The Trees -- Philip Larkin
The Sirens -- Richard Wilbur
A Slice of Wedding Cake -- Robert Graves
...And sometimes he shares his own, like this one:
"Screw teaching, " I say.
From now on I only write.
Haiku. Praising Spring.