“in his own world…”

it’s not easy being a kid. in school, for instance, you have to sit long hours in a desk and pay attention to instruction that seems to have little to do with life on the outside.  i have nothing against teachers. after all, i fell in love with my second-grade teacher, mrs. blake. but teachers are given the curriculum they have to teach. and parents are given roles by their culture and sometimes have little tolerance for kids not doing what they are supposed to do. a kid can end up feeling trapped. 


“in his own world…”


my teacher wrote.

mom and dad frowned

at the report card.

but how could they

expect me to stay sealed up

in the classroom

unable to move

unable to breathe?


so i continued to

slide between realities —

thin sheets of plastic

stacked so that one sheet

might slip out at any time,

another template for seeing.


pedaling and day-dreaming

home from school one day

on a flat-straight Kansas road

i got off my bike to take a short-cut,

crawled under the barbed-wire fence


continued on foot unaware

of having left the bike there

and then slipped deeper

into another world


surrounded by the enemy

but armed with

magic bullets

magic guns.


Published by


I've been writing mostly poetry for many years and have gotten a number of works accepted in publications and anthologies. I'm most interested in communicating with poets for whom craft is a high priority. I enjoy finding and commenting on poetic gems in other people's work. For my own work, I welcome polite comments, whether positive or critical.

17 thoughts on ““in his own world…””

  1. Poignant and well written. I always enjoy poetry that makes the abstract idea concrete. This poem inspires me. Recalling what I imagined when needing escape as a child. I immediately noted some gender differences. I may write back 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. i am glad to read that the poem inspires you, laine. if you write something about your own similar experiences i would love to see it. and if you would be kind enough to tell me about the gender differences i would be very interested to see what you would say.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve published a response to your poem today, Michael. As a child, dance was my escape. Music played in my imagination. I danced with clouds, oceans, trees and ruled the world as a Princess of nature. I especially loved twirling in the wind and imagining it did my bidding.


    1. thanks so much, bonnie. that is wonderful to read. by the way, i read earlier today a poem on your site called “The Decants,” but i couldn’t find any links that would enable me to comment. perhaps that is what you want? anyway, it reminds me of many of my experiences as a child living on the prairie.


      1. Thinking…it was the sense of space at once dangerous an needful for growing up…and we survived to tell about it. Glad you liked the descents. Every once in a while I cull those together. Smile.


  2. Such a difficult time of life — adults always seem to forget this! Your mention of “…thin sheets of plastic…” recalled to my mind the overhead projector, and the smell and subtle hum of that contraption…dusty and too-warm; a constant, dull drone. (I, myself, built a rabbit warren in my cardboard pencil box and populated it with pencil-eraser-tip rabbits…) 🙂


    1. carrie, your description of your rabbit warren just made me chuckle out loud. i can see it with the little pink rabbits. thanks for your kind response. i am too old to have memories of the overhead projector, but i know what you mean because you describe it so well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It is revealing, Micheal, that as children we perfectly sense all the confines, all the barricades and fences being put up around us. Some of us never quite succumb. Bonnie’s comment..”early wilding” says it all! This sets in so deeply as a personal modus operandi …. creating poets, artists, visionaries….. a lovely poem Michael. It was particularly good to read today!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks, dave for your comment. i appreciate it! and it’s good to have you as a follower. also, thanks for the tip on the audio file. actually, i just tried it and it works fine on this end.


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