I am a truant from my own life.
I ran away to foreign fields
to escape the life that was looming large
and in my explorations I learned nothing.
Oh, I lived – I remember it well.
It was a dream, that time,
cotton-candy fluff unsuited for the trials of the future.
Every so often I crept silently back
to gaze into what was and should have been;
to peer through windows with their rippled panes
streaked and dusty, distorting the schoolroom
I abandoned in such willing haste.
I saw domesticity and order
and that bland niche of comfort
thrust insistently at women of my station.
But I, impatient, wanting something different,
skipped several grades in that grim school of discipline
and thereby hangs this tale.
And now I am come back, the truant,
the find the schoolroom empty,
books abandoned, buried in dust,
and the teachers silent in their graves.
The report card is in –
I have failed in every subject.
Absent, absent, absent.
Assignments not completed.
No evidence of effort.
Homework not turned in.
There is no rebuttal to these markings.
I was absent.
I made no effort.
I shirked the lessons needed
in favor of experience, willy-nilly.
Now I stand shivering, alone;
not by desire but by choices made
without the proper lessoning
in their inevitable outcome.
© 2012 RC deWinter
The price of deviating from expectations and choosing to live one’s life by one’s own lights.