Saturday, January 31, 2009

Nerd in High School, January 31, 2009

from Long Quiet Highway: Waking Up in America, by Natalie Goldberg

"You know, I was a nerd in high school," I said. I paused. "Do they use the word 'nerd' now?"

They nodded.

"I didn't know I'd be a writer. I was just bored."

Then I told them about Mr. Clemente, my high school English teacher. One day he switched off the lights above our heads and told us to listen to the rain. My high school had big windows, I told them, and I felt what a blessing it was as I stood in front of this windowless modern classroom. "That's all we had to do--listen to the rain. There wasn't a test or a quiz on rain, on listening, or on cloudy afternoons."

I told the kids in Taos High School that day to trust in what they loved, that you don't know where it will lead you. "The important thing is to love something, even if it's skateboarding or car mechanics or whistling. Let yourself love it completely."

Prompts: Write about loving something completely, or about a day in high school. Or both!


Carol Henderson said...

Over the next days I'm going to go back and write to the prompts I haven't done yet. I just wrote and posted about Gazing East and Dreaming.

Keep in touch!

Kay said...

Thanks for all the January prompts. I feel showered with thoughts to pluck up out of the puddles and write about. In my present slowed-down time, I may not ever finish!

Oh, the day(s) in high school(s). How about 6000 of them, not counting my own 720? More than a smorgasbord! I'll never finish recording and remembering.

Carol Henderson said...

Good to hear from you Kay. I'd love to read about some of your days in the classroom as a teacher.

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