Since this week is short, and sometimes inspiring or reflective words are their own special category of professional development, we are sharing an excerpt of an E.E. Cummings’ poem.
This poem reflects the one quality all teachers share: we are first learners, then teachers; knowing this truth, the act of teaching deepens our learning. Cummings’ poetry is particularly wonderful with its intentionally opaque images, leaving the reader a chance to contemplate its meaning on multiple levels.*
We hope this poem provides a few moments of such contemplation, and we wish you a week full of gratitude and bounty.
You Shall Above All Things
you shall above all things be glad and young.
For if you’re young, whatever life you wear
it will become you; and if you are glad
whatever’s living will yourself become.
I’d rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.
- E.E. Cummings
*For those of you not familiar with Cummings, he took great liberty with punctuation, capitalization and syntax. We have maintained his usage in this excerpt but have used standard usage for the poem’s title and the author’s name.