Monday, July 25, 2011


Not long ago a friend was speaking about a dresser she saw in an antique store, saying how it was so “marvelously made”, and later, I mused about how marvelously made all of us are, including my young students. It’s easy and commonplace to marvel at the machines our society produces these days – the computers, the miraculous cars, the colossal planes that somehow ascend above us – but what about the human machines that make miracles each second of their existence? What above these boys and girls that get fresh ideas by the dozens in my classes – ideas that may not be made-to-order for the lesson I happen to be teaching but that nonetheless are minor miracles? What about the students’ feelings that flow unceasingly and in unlimited fullness throughout every class, and that transform their inner lives moment by moment as surely as oxygen transforms their bodies? What about the words they place in essays, words that, as simple as they might be, can brighten a teacher’s day as he reads them? These essays, these words, these feelings and ideas, these young students of mine – these are truly marvelously made, more, in my mind, than any dresser sitting in a store

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