April 20, 2010

The Forgotten Schoolhouse

I'm not a poet.
But I took a composition class with some fellow homeschoolers at the age of fifteen - and, well - writing a poem suddenly became mandatory. We were encouraged to use as many metaphors and instances of personification as possible... My source of inspiration became the little one hundred year old schoolhouse at the end of our road, the country schoolhouses all over America. The poem was written, graded, forgotten. A few weeks ago, we took some friends down to visit the old place, and get some photos. It made me remember my poem.

Down the road stands a crumbling
brick schoolhouse,
without many days left to spend.

Nothing to keep it company,
but the melancholy sighing of the wind.

The quaint little building has fallen
into hopeless disrepair -

Creaking, and rattling
with every breath of air.

Many years have passed
since all it's children were laid to rest;
some sooner, some later,
but where I can only guess.

Some on the battlefields of France,
some just a mile away.

It's beyond one's imagination
where so many adventurers could stray.

They were born into a generation
when freedom and tyranny would duel,

But the will to protect liberty
was diligently taught in that school.

With only an eighth grade education,
they grew to be patriots and inventors,

Some paid the ultimate price,
others lived to be wizened mentors.

(David Thatcher, one of the last surviving "Doolittle Raiders" - I took this photo Saturday.)

Their legacies live on,
and may for a few years more,
but what has become of the values
they fought so valiantly for?

Their schoolhouse stands forgotten;
a relic of the past,

And the country that has forgotten it,
is crumbling just as fast.


Merriette said...

Wow, I love the poem. And that is a beautiful old schoolhouse, especially in the last picture. Thanks for sharing those.

Anonymous said...

That's gorgeous Kate! I like how it has sort of a melancholy ending.

Miss Breezy said...

The words and pictures go together so well. I love the line, "Nothing to keep it company, but the melancholy sighing of the wind." Excellent!

Seth Sutherland said...

That is an excellent poem! You did a very good job of captivating your audience's emotions by means of poetry and pictures. And then you threw in your twist at the end, which really drives home a point that is all too true... Very well written!

Rebecca Franks said...

Oh, Kate! What wonderful meaning is conveyed in your poem. So sad, yet so true... The same mournful aching of the heart that I am reminded of when I study our wars. It was an honor to see the Doolittle raiders with you. May we not forget the values they lived and died for!

Your Friend,

Laura Lee said...

Just started following your blog! I am absolutely breathless, that was an amazingly brilliant poem. :)
I have lots of respect for good writing, and the work that is put into it. Come and visit my blog sometime.

In Him,


Sarah Elizabeth said...

Your poetry is great! And your photography is wonderful too..wow.