Poem on “The One Thing Wrong with Student Writing” – by Michael Tilyer

Community College Faculty were asked, “Based on the papers you receive, what do you think is the number one thing ‘wrong’ with student writing? Or, put another way: if you had a magic wand, what’s the one thing you’d change about the papers you receive?”

Michael Tilyer decided to answer this question in the form of a poem (decide for yourself which version of the question he chose to answer). To read the poem, click here…

If there were one thing,

And one thing only,

How would you say it?

How would it be said?

Hear the émigré plea?

 

Hear the youth

Who no longer

Hopes to succeed plea?

 

Hear the dead–

The stuporous. Plea?

Hear the mother or too

Young and soon to be plea.

What answer

Would you listen for?

Would it come in

Four parts or two?

A cantata?

Would it come

Cantankerous?

Cacophonous?

Would it complain?

Mewl?

No, it would be mute.

It would fall on deaf ears.

Because there is not

One to listen.

 

There is too

Little time to listen.

Time passes,

And

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