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A Poem for MSA 2011

It broke my heart that day,

Watching you all walk away,

Stepping into the car, driving away

It wasn’t the place, no –

It wasn’t the time, no –

Any other year, any other hall

They could have had us meet

And still captured us all

It was the world they showed us

It was what they could see

It was the broken cages around us

That’s what set us free

I can’t believe the words, the phrases,

That rocked my world those weeks

The summer that left our faces

With countless tears on our cheeks

It wasn’t the place, no –

It wasn’t the time, no –

There wasn’t one single thing

That gave way to the ground below

And set us away on wings

We were taught more than just facts

We were taught how to think

And though we received our wings

We were warned not to sink

And so, my friends, months have passed

Since we last held another

We hoped and prayed the time wouldn’t last

Until we were again sisters and brothers

But I beg you not to falter

No matter how long you’re away

Your cup has only so much water

And you must watch where you sway

Don’t forget the world you were given –

You were gifted with the truest of sights

And though the world tells you to stop living

Be that kid who keeps up all hours all nights

Searching for the truth – what’s right

And don’t give up, don’t ever give up

And don’t let your dreams leave your sight

Don’t go counting crayons –

You can’t win that game

But missing what you can’t have

And having what you won’t miss

That’s really all the same

Just start drawing pictures

Take the world you’ve got

Whether it’s ‘perfect’ or not

Because you’ve got the power

The first grader inside of you

Build something beautiful

You know you’ve got it –

Or maybe it’s got you?

I once was that kid

The one who never shuts up

About his school, his life

His boundaries that just keep coming

But I finally woke up

I saw the world as it is –

Not with stop signs or bumps or walls or dead ends

But with challenges to take

To learn from

To use

And those, my friends, are life’s greatest crayons

The things with which you have to mesh and blend –

Because where would we be

If Eminem stopped in Detroit?

Or if Ray Charles never touched the keys?

Or if Bill Gates gave up after college?

Or if you stopped, and decided you couldn’t contend?

Just another person

Wishing they had more crayons.


About wgwinfrey

I'm currently a student at the University of Missouri, studying strategic communications at the school of journalism. Although I spend most of my time working, studying, sleeping, or hanging out with friends, I do get to direct some of my energy to other interests, such as video games, books, and writing.

One response to “A Poem for MSA 2011

  1. clara128

    HOLY COW That was amazing!!!!!! I forgot so much about MSA. It was good to have a reminder in the middle of a stressful school week to slow down and appreciate what is going on around me. Thanks!

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