Tag Archives: School



In Bethlehem
a refugee with sadness but no hate decreed
another generation is what we need

And a school where
the children of the refugees of holocausts and
refugees of refugees can learn together
learn to look inward first

This is a most beautiful and special place
with such regard for dignity and respect
so successful in their message of love
so filled with fairness to each side

That Arafat’s Palestinians burn their busses
and Israelis torture teachers and riddle walls

While Caterpillars sent from across the sea
creep closer each day in their wonderful
mindless mechanical way
with levelling intent

To be met with Gandhi smiles
and your help, if you give it


Hope Flowers School – Bethlehem



There were seven students and eight grades
With the inkwells covered to save the braids

The first day of school
the boys all rushed through the door
to fight for their seats
with their father’s initials carved thirty years before

At recess there were garter snakes, and gophers, and mice
which girls who were being chased, and teachers
who had just opened desk drawers didn’t think
were so nice.

At recess you could get on the big teeter totter
on the North side. If you could get high enough,
long enough, you could get a bobbing glimpse of
one of the big boys, hand outstretched for the
well deserved strap.

In winter the pot bellied stove was set up in the
back center of the room. How warm you were
depended on how close you were to the back. The
teacher didn’t always teach from the front of the

There was a big tin shield five feet high around
the stove to keep us from burning ourselves
although it got hot enough itself to do a pretty
good job

Any lapse in supervision added to its décor as
we melted our wax crayons into modern art on
its silver sides

It was always great to hear the lessons
meant for other ears than these
and to sting the older kids in spelling bees

In those days outdoor toilets were cricket

and so was the game we played
with firewood for posts
and baseball bats
for bats.