This beautiful poem comes to us from Nick Clarke-Gerrard who writes for the blog Carbon-Based Lifeform Blues. With his permission, we’ve reprinted this poem here. Be sure to check out his blog.
You lined me up in the hall
Pushed my nose against the wall
An told me I was disruptive
You made me write out many lines
Stay after class, serve my time
And caned me into submission.
Submit to listen to boring shit
Pay attention! Don’t question it!
Learn it, repeat till it sticks
You don’t get to learn interesting stuff
You learn to pass tests and bluff
your way to qualifying.
Back then I was badly behaved, distracted
No attention paid.
Easily influenced and a bad one
Now, I think I would be diagnosed with ADHD
Something mentally wrong with me.
Give him a dose of drugs.
Drugs to anesthetize my sense
So, I will sit still and listen to the same old stench
That comes from another century.
Knock me out so I can learn
off by heart, facts are churned
to get me through the tests.
Why should I listen to all that maths,
taught the same way as when my grandad took tin baths
And think I will enjoy it
What about all this interesting technology
that’s available to me
Surely we could use that
Make it fill me with desire
to gather knowledge with a fire
give me a chance to open up
Give me a chance to create
dance and sample and relate
Learn things needed and I might like it
Don’t lock me in a dark room of old pye books
chalk and blackboard withered rooks
Then tell me to pay attention
Work under my own steam.
Why can’t I work as a team?
Outside the best work is done in teams.
Don’t copy that’s cheating,
and at the back no peeking.
For answers or collaboration
Teach us one thing, tell us another
Be individual, at work a brother.
Help each other, at school be selfish.
Start at the same time
work in the same line
Study this one way, this is the right path
Churning out this year’s batch.
the date that we hatch.
Like a factory assembly line
You’re not listening to Logarithms!
Cus I’m thinking of things with more rhythms.
You’ve got attention deficit disorder.
It’s not ADD
I’m thinking of something more interesting to me.
What are you talking about, the History of the Kings of England?
Don’t anesthetize my creativity
Stimulate, bring it out of me
Don’t knock me out, wake me up!