For the Mid-week motif on Poets United – Literacy

“Our high respect for a well read person is praise enough for literature.” – T. S. Eliot

I can’t remember a time when I did not read.
There must have been a time
but it is faded like a torn out
discarded page of a magazine.
My teachers wanted me tested.
I was six and they felt I was retarded.
I always looked up with a blank stare
when it was my turn to read from Dick and Jane.
The test revealed I had an
eighth grade reading level
and that I read ahead of my classmates.
So much for being the class dummy
as my fellow students called me.
When I was 11 I whined to my grandmother
as she cooked us dinner:
I am hot. I am bored. Amuse me.
She left me to watch the food on the stove
and went to our library.
When she returned she handed me
the complete works of T. S. Eliot.
Amuse yourself.
And I did.
on the bedside table is always piled
at least five books in various stages of being read.
Including the old copy of T. S. Eliot –
always there. Always in a state of being read.

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