WORDS LIKE LIGHT 

Sunday, October 3, 2021

SCHOOL

            Five mornings each week, a yellow school bus picks up the children in our neighborhood, and seven days each week, an invisible school bus picks me up and carries me off to the wonderful school called ‘Life’. All day – every hour, every moment – I am a student in an educational institution that has no walls or doors, and in which the teachers are everywhere – in every place, every occurrence, and every thing. Today, I will be attending – and am attending right now as I type these words – an academy of the highest prestige, a college that costs nothing and is staffed by exceedingly learned teachers. My professors will be all the magical moments of the day (which is every moment) and I will have the honor of simply watching and listening and learning. But it won’t be easy to be a good student. It will take determination and self-discipline and concentration, moment after moment. I find that I get easily bored in the school of everyday life, when so many moments seem humdrum and tedious, but right in those very moments, life is ready to teach me marvelous lessons, if only I would stay ready and willing to learn. The simplest experiences – seeing sparrows swooping around the yard, hearing cars smoothly moving past our house, feeling my lungs rise and fall – can be teachers of the highest kind. I can learn valuable lessons today from the way winds pass through trees, the way spoken words work miracles,  the way light from a little lamp brightens a whole room.  The local school bus comes along our street around 8:30 each morning, but the bus of my everyday school has already picked me up, and it’s only 5:16 a.m. I’m off on an educational adventure for the next 16 waking hours. I hope I get good grades from my wonderful teachers!

“TELL US ABOUT YOUR HISTORY AS A STUDENT”
(from an application)

"The more I studied, the more I 
understood the stars in their homes, 
and the winds that sing across roads. 
I watched the wings of birds, the 
running rivers, the clouds like friends 
together, and the brave brotherhood 
of trees. I heard the hearts of books 
beating, listened to the voices of 
pencils, and studied the conversations 
of computer keys. I attended the school 
of tears, the summer camp of friendship, 
and the college of chaos and love. The 
sunrise showed me wisdom, and all the 
bends in all the roads were my teachers. 
I turned the pages of silence each day. 
My grades were set in the sky at night."   

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