Friday, March 4, 2022



Two minutes until class is over. 

About ten sixth graders

cluster around the back table, 

working on an evidence paragraph.

We finish up and I send them back to their seats 

to pack up for lunch.

And then it happens.

Four or five military planes

 zoom over the school.

In formation.

A flyover.

This is not uncommon. 

I live near an airfield.

Planes fly over our school 

pretty regularly

They are always loud.

But today 

the noise feels deafening.

For a minute 

minor hysteria ensues.

Furniture tips over.

Kids dive under their desks.

There are screams. 

Comments about World War Three.

I restore order.

Turn furniture upright.

Remind kids that 

We hear flyovers

pretty regularly.

Tell my twelve-year-olds

that we are fine.

Dismiss for lunch.

Class jokester

Fashion statement

In one white croc

And one black Nike



Miss, he says.

I don't like those.

With everything 

that's happening

They scare me.

I think World War Three

Is coming. 


I don't know what to say. 

They scare me too. 

And like M

I wonder 

If World War Three

Is coming.

I give him a hug.

Rub his back. 

Because that is all

I know to do. 


Ramona Towner said...

Heart breaking for sure that they have to live through this. I remember back in September 2001 at the start of school we had students write acrostic poems to get to know them. When I finished hanging them on the lockers I stood back and read them collectively. They were dark and full of sadness. Perhaps a session with the social worker is in order?

Ramona said...

It's amazing to see another Ramona pop up in comments. When I saw your title, I chuckled. As a former sixth grade teacher I know they are no ordinary days in 6th grade. It speaks volumes of the trust he felt that the class jokester hung around to share his fears with you. I'm scared too.