can we do it?

May 29, 2012


In conversation with a coworker just now, I realized that it was Memorial Day. This realization struck me as rather ironic really. Considering where I live, what I’ve been working on from yesterday, and what has happened thus far today.
I live in Afgh@nistan. Yes, really. One of the silly poems I wrote in the poem-a-day series had a line that read, “Can we do it? Yes, we can. For we live in Afgh@nistan!” It has a catchy enough rhyme to it that I’ve found myself repeating that line in my head periodically, as things happen that remind me of my surreal reality. Case in point: that “silly” poem was not so silly after all, for it was about our most recent stint of taking shelter from hours of gunfire, bomb blasts, and rocket soundings.
But in the midst of this surreality, we held a grand, celebratory dance recital yesterday. Here, of all places–a celebration of dance! And it was indeed a celebration: a truly beautiful one.
So this morning I was teaching a kindergarten class, in which we discussed jobs. And no, I do not habitually discuss gainful employment with 5-year olds: this stemmed from a reading of the book “Fox on the Job.”
But in our discussion, I asked the children to share what they wanted to be when they grew up, and why. There were the usual responses: doctor, teacher, nurse. But one “usual” answer had an unusual “why” added to it. He wanted to be a policeman. Oh good, I said. And why is that? “Because we have a gun at home. And I want to use a gun.”
After a pause, I said “ok” and hurried on to the next raised hand. Maybe I should have done something more with that response but you know, I just didn’t know what to say. I was more than relieved with the next answer of “teacher.” And then amused by the added “Dance teacher” description. Now there’s a hopeful thought, in the midst of this, whatever this may be, which I dare say I often don’t know . . . Make dance, not war?

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One Response to “can we do it?”

  1. Carol Waffel said

    My kids loved those Fox books. There are several, all good. Love when Fox’s mom gives him a look.

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